AMP’ing up Website Speed for Mobiles

Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is an initiative to improve page load times for mobile devices.

What is AMP ?

AMP aims to strip away some of the coding complexities – especially JavaScript – that have evolved to provide sophisticated web page functionality to provide leaner HTML which loads much quicker.  The project is a work in progress, and yet to finalise how it will address a full range of current website functions such as eCommerce etc.

Page Load Speeds and Google ranking

Page load times are a key requirement on mobile devices where connection speeds vary with access to signal.  Page load speed is also a Google ranking factor.

It seems inevitable that Google – one of the AMP initiative partners – will provide ranking preference to AMP compliant pages either on the basis of:

  • detection of AMP compliant coding or
  • the improved page load speed afforded by AMP compliance

What does AMP mean for your business?

So as a business owner interested in attracting mobile visitors, the evolvement of AMP is something you and your web developer should keep a very close eye on. Early AMP adopters are likely to gain Google ranking advantages which will translate into business opportunities.

AMP Compliance Frenzy?

After the recent panic to ensure websites were ‘Mobile Compliant’ for Google’s underwhelming Mobilegeddon release in April, I can see there will be another round of web development frenzy to make sites AMP compliant to maintain or improve online commercial traction.

AMP Deployment Timing

The AMP project is clearly still evolving but there is already a Javascript replacement so I assume (somewhat naively perhaps) that simple (ie non-ecommerce) sites can be recoded to take advantage of the AMP project.

AMP and WordPress

WordPress, the world’s most popular website system have announced they are supporting AMP. If AMP can be easily deployed in WordPress it will significantly strengthen WordPress’ CMS domination.

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Standby for HTTP/2 – A faster, more secure internet!

A faster internet with HTTP/2

Image source: www.trainersonsite.com

The internet is going to get faster. Yowzah!  It’s a tad techy, but trust me this is a BIG DEAL. The connection between your browser and internet stuff will be able to run faster and more securely using the all new and improved HTTP/2. Its good news for all internet users.

When we be going faster ?

When both your browser and the web server/resource you’re connected to both have HTTP/2 support.

Browsers are ready. Maybe.

Chrome 40 (already released) includes HTTP/2 support
Firefox 35 already supports HTTP/2
Internet Explorer (You want performance and you use IE. Really??!)

Web Servers are ready. Maybe.
IIS released in Windows 10
Apache requires mod_spdy to be deployed
* see Industry Comments below
Litespeed can support HTTP/2

The HTTP/2 low down

* Warning there’s some techy stuff here!*
HTTP/2 is nearly here. About time! The HTTP/2 standard which has been under development since 2012 is nearly ready to be released into the wild. HTTP/2 offers a number of ‘modernised approaches’ to shifting data across the wire that are quite normal now in other communications mediums so its good to see the internet finally catching up.

Binary transfers

HTTP 1.1 currently only allows text transfers over the wire. HTTP/2 will inherently improve online transfer speed and security by providing for binary data transfer.

Multiplexing

HTTP/2 allows for multiple bidirectional streams, multiplexed over a single TCP connection, and multiple HTTP/2 TCP streams can be used (up to 100, all independently) as well. Wow!

More compression coming to an internet near you soon

Standby for the HPACK http header compression standard to be published soon

Industry Comments

Andrew White, Technical Support Manager at Micron21

At this stage we have no plans to implement HTTP/2.0 (or HTTP/2 as it’s also called) due to software incompatibilities. Currently cPanel provides very limited unofficial support for mod_spdy (the origin of HTTP/2.0) due to incompatibilities with the latest Apache version and dependencies on a flawed version of OpenSSL.

This standard has only been approved by the IESG for 7 days now – the technology would definitely be classed as bleeding edge software. The environment we provide is an enterprise production based one, so we will likely not run this on any of our servers at any time soon.

A point of interest is that Litespeed (the primary HTTPD we use on our shared hosting, we ditched Apache a few years ago) has put in preliminary support for HTTP/2.0 on their open/development application OpenLitespeed, so we’ll likely have provisional support in Litespeed within the next month or two.

Kind Regards,

 Andrew White
Technical Support Manager
www.micron21.com

 

 

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