Google Retires Web Light Webpage Transcoding

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Google announced they are retiring the 7 years of age Web Light service that optimized websites for gadgets on slow mobile phones and mobile connections.

The official Google developer page documentation for Web Light Google and the associated user agent (googleweblight) are both retired.

Google Web Light

Presented in 2015, the function of the Web Light service was to make more of the web accessible to users in countries with sluggish mobile connections and gadgets.

The service worked by enhancing websites so that downloading them used 80% less data, leading to a four-fold boost in speed over the slower 2G mobile networks.

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

Web Light previously worked on Chrome and Android internet browsers and just when Google found a slow connection. The performance did not trigger for desktop gadgets or tablets, just for mobile devices on slow connections.

Google Analytics still operated in the Web Light enhanced pages.

In terms of advertisement serving, Web Light optimized pages supported Sovrn, Zedo, AdSense, and Google Publisher Tags.

So in theory Web Light ought to not have actually impacted advertisement profits however rather increased them considering that transcoded web pages got up to 50% more traffic at the time.

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

The now erased documents explained the performance of Web Light:

“Google shows faster, lighter pages to people browsing on sluggish mobile customers.

To do this, we transcode (convert) web pages on the fly into a variation enhanced for slow clients, so that these pages pack much faster while conserving data.

This technology is called Web Light.

Web Light pages protect a majority of the appropriate material and offer a link for users to see the initial page. “

Web Light No Longer Needed

7 years later, the accessibility of inexpensive however powerful mobile devices and an enhancement in mobile connection speeds made the requirement of the service no longer necessary.

According to Statista, 99% of mobile information use in India during 2021 took place over 4G devices.

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

The Google developer paperwork for Web Light was eliminated and a note was contributed to Google’s User Agent paperwork to communicate that the Web Light user representative is retired.

Google’s announcement stated:

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

We introduced Web Light to enable us to serve quicker, lighter pages to people browsing on entry-level gadgets.

While this feature has actually worked as intended and made it possible for more comprehensive access to the richness of the web, increased cost of more powerful mobile phones has actually decreased the need for such functionality.

We remain dedicated to progressing and fine-tuning the Browse experience to meet the changing requirements of our users.”

Featured image by Best SMM Panel/Asier Romero