Google has confirmed in a blog post that its Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project has made good progress since being announced in October. The company plans to send traffic to AMP pages in search results by February 2016. Twitter will begin linking to AMP pages around the same time. Meanwhile, Pinterest confirmed that during its initial tests, AMP pages were loading 4x faster, using 8x less data than traditional mobile-optimised pages.
Google speeds up AMP project
AMP uses a custom version of HTML coding which is less bulky and hence takes less time to load. AMP pages are like a copy version of the original article. Smaller publishers can also take advantage of the project using Google’s infrastructure.
Rudy Galfi, Product Manager, Google, confirmed that the company was to determine search rank of content by speed, as one of its criteria. Essentially, this could mean that publishers using AMP may have their content appear higher in search rankings. He says:
“The way we think about it is, speed is one of those critical ranking factors, not the only one that you need, and AMP says to us, basically, ‘I’m consistently fast’.”
Accelerated Mobile Pages have been compared to Facebook Instant Articles, both providing a simpler and faster way to read content. Aram Zucker-Scharff, Developer, Salon Media Group, voiced criticism:
“Instant Articles are problematic because publishers are giving control over to Facebook to determine how content is displayed to Facebook users. But AMP is troubling because Google is telling us how it thinks the entire Web should work.”
AMP is now being supported by publishers including Network18, NDTV, and DNA India in India; Tempo and Kompass in Indonesia; Chosun, Joongang, Maekyung, Yonhap, YTN, Newstapa, and Slow News in South Korea; Inquirer in the Philippines; Televisa and Grupo Expansión in Mexico; Fox News in the US; and LINE, Nikkan Sports, CINEMATODAY, and IID, Inc. in Japan. LinkedIn has plans to jump on board in 2016.