I imagine if they stripped off all the stuff from their own sites that doesn't show up on AMP the speed would basically be the same, and they wouldn't be under Google's thumb.
No massive header with lots of images of other stories, no master folder with lots of images of other stories, no giant sidebar with lots of images of other stories… get rid of all of them. All of a sudden your page is really fast and doesn't take 45s to load.
Remember what the web was like on dial-up? Design pages for that but with large images. Text goes a LONG way for navigation and discovery of other stories. You don't need ridiculous big images.
Do something really simple. Make a page with content that looks exactly like the AMP page. AB test that against the AMP page. I'd be willing to bet they basically perform the same, modulo any benefit Google gives you for being part of their lock-in.
Text articles with pictures do not require the complexity of googles infrastructure and systems to be fast and lite.
We had to pause that project and drop it all to go work on AMP...
(so you could fairly say I'm a bit bitter about that)
BTW Hey Mike miss you!
edit: HN is another great example, of course :)
And I ALWAYS use the desktop version because the mobile version is a disaster. I've never tried to use it so I wasn't aware of the fullscreen popovers. I just hate the incredibly low information density.
Why should I only see two or three things on the screen at once when I can see 20? And the 20 still looks better.
I really don't understand the point of Reddit's mobile site.
I like the old iphone feel, seems clean, fast, and easy to use. The only thing I can complain about it that the gear option opens the menu at the bottom of a comment.
Edit: * - works in a read-only sense, you have to turn JS on to comment or expand comments.
So they can show more ads.
Do you have any more info on this?
You can see the beginnings of it on the new profile pages, for example https://www.reddit.com/user/kn0thing
For example if on mobile you go to a subreddit to make a post it will present you with the self post and the link post option regardless of the settings of the subreddit. So you write a long post and post it, only to get told sorry this subreddit doesn't allow self posts, or you post a link and you spend a lot of time typing in the title only to get told sorry no links allowed. WTF?? It's beyond ridiculous that they show the option of making a post in a subreddit where it does not apply.
It doesn't stop there. The whole thing is very disappointing :(
- On desktop you get useful error messages like for example "you're doing that too much, try again in x minutes". On the mobile web version it's just a generic message that is of absolutely zero help.
- You get to see the score of your posts (good) on your profile but to see the score of your comments you have to click on an individual comment. Bad!
I don't like being lied to.
They're not doing it because it's faster, they're doing it because they want the rank boost.
So I think I should just say that. "We did it to get higher rankings because Google prioritizes it." Don't lie and say it was to get things to be faster, you could've done that on your own.
Not willing to say that? Then don't talk about speed. Because you had control over that.
There is little to no financial incentive for companies to swim against the current, and large financial incentive to come aboard and join the ranks of other AMP-supported sites.
The cracks in the system are beginning to show.
Well...of course. Limitations are empowering in their own way. HTML grew, and grew, and grew to the point that soon middle managers are demanding the most abusive tactics in a desperate tragedy of the commons. Users -- tired of pop-overs and subscription boxes and notification demands and location monitoring and janky scrolling and slow loading -- start to prefer silos like Facebook instant articles or Apple news. AMP comes along and says "we'll limit these to the minimum to elegantly provide text content and put an icon to let you know" and users love it.
Could the site optimize themselves? Of course but they won't.
Every time AMP comes up I remark that we really need a new HTMLite specification, and must demand the same promotion/iconography, or optionally allowing users to turn their browser to HTMLite mode where it will only accept validated HTMLite content. All to achieve the same user-benefits without the central control. Instead everyone just pretends that we all just need to behave as developers and it isn't needed.
> AMP’s new speed gains in Google Search are due to several key optimizations that we made to the Google AMP Cache, such as server-side rendering of AMP components, and reducing bandwidth usage from images by 50% without affecting the perceived quality. We also used a compression algorithm called Brotli that Google launched a couple years ago, resulting in a reduced document size by an additional 10% in supported browsers.
So, no. Just stripping down the page would not make pages load as quickly as AMP. Then, there's also the fact that you get Google's CDN for free.