Google Retires Web Light Web Page Transcoding

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Google announced they are retiring the 7 years of age Web Light service that optimized web pages for devices on sluggish mobile devices and mobile connections.

The main Google designer page paperwork for Web Light Google and the associated user representative (googleweblight) are both retired.

Google Web Light

Presented in 2015, the purpose of the Web Light service was to make more of the web available to users in nations with sluggish mobile connections and gadgets.

The service worked by enhancing web pages so that downloading them utilized 80% less data, resulting in a four-fold increase in speed over the slower 2G mobile networks.

According to Google the service in a 50% increase in traffic to websites.

Web Light previously dealt with Chrome and Android web browsers and just when Google identified a slow connection. The functionality did not set off for desktop devices or tablets, only for mobile phones on sluggish connections.

Google Analytics still worked in the Web Light enhanced pages.

In regards to advertisement serving, Web Light enhanced pages supported Sovrn, Zedo, AdSense, and Google Publisher Tags.

So in theory Web Light need to not have affected advertisement profits however rather increased them given that transcoded web pages got as much as 50% more traffic at the time.

The service was initially presented in Indonesia and then to India.

The now deleted documentation described the performance of Web Light:

“Google reveals faster, lighter pages to people browsing on slow mobile clients.

To do this, we transcode (convert) web pages on the fly into a variation enhanced for slow customers, so that these pages load much faster while saving information.

This innovation is called Web Light.

Web Light pages preserve a bulk of the pertinent material and supply a link for users to view the original page. “

Web Light No Longer Needed

Seven years later on, the accessibility of inexpensive but effective mobile phones and an enhancement in mobile connection speeds made the requirement of the service no longer required.

According to Statista, 99% of mobile information usage in India during 2021 occurred over 4G devices.

In 2015 there were only 47 million devices that were 4G capable compared to 650 million in 2021.

The Google designer documentation for Web Light was removed and a note was contributed to Google’s User Agent documentation to communicate that the Web Light user representative is retired.

Google’s announcement stated:

“Gotten Rid Of the Web Light paperwork and retired the Web Light user representative.

We presented Web Light to enable us to serve faster, lighter pages to individuals browsing on entry-level devices.

While this feature has actually worked as desired and made it possible for more comprehensive access to the richness of the web, increased cost of more powerful smart devices has actually decreased the requirement for such functionality.

We stay dedicated to developing and fine-tuning the Search experience to satisfy the changing needs of our users.”

Featured image by SMM Panel/Asier Romero