Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Chrome for Android can skip images to speed up web pages on slow connections

Google's Chrome for Android has had a Data Saver feature for a while now, but it's about to start saving even more of our precious time (and data) when we need it the most: when it detects a slow network connection.

Chrome's Data Saver mode has helped slightly save data when browsing the web, but it doesn't come close to the savings you can achieve with Opera Mini's "Turbo Mode". Though you can use these modes to save data, sometimes you use it just to speed up the loading of web pages when you have a very slow connection (remember the 2G days?) and that's what Google has finally noticed.

When Chrome for Android detects a slow connection and you have Data Saver enabled, it will skip loading the images to speed up showing you the page content. Most of the time, the text is what it really matters, if not, you can simply tap any image you want to load (or load it all)... as long as you don't mind waiting for it.

Google says this new image skipping method can save up to 70% of you data - not surprising considering images make for most of today's web pages, and often they're badly used, as proven by those sites that insist on using multi-megabyte PNG photos for things that are shown as thumbnails. The only problem is that, for now, this image skipping mode will only be enabled for India and Indonesia - but let's hope Google remember everyone else around the world would appreciate the same speed boost when they're in problematic areas with poor cell coverage.

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