Accelerated Mobile Pages Vs. Progressive Web Apps: Which Is Better?

PWA Vs AMP

Do you know what PWAs and AMPs are? Do you know which is the better option for you? Well, let us have a look and see which one is right. So many people these days have smartphones. This can open up the best opportunities for businesses these days. However, these options are challenged by our different competitors in the software market.

Mobile applications tend to be more convenient than desktop or web platforms in the first place. However, these apps aren’t the most comfortable options the industry offers. To ensure that the users can receive the best experience and satisfaction and cast aside the competitors, the most innovative people are trying to build PWAs and AMPs. So, what are these things, and how can they be useful? Let us understand that by discussing some important topics right here.

What Exactly Is A PWA?

When we are talking about a progressive web application or a PWA, it can be said that the technology combines the advantages of both mobile and web applications into a singular product. PWAs are basic examples of user experiences that have managed to reach the web and are fast, engaging, and reliable in the best sense. It is a particular technology with the help of which you can use a website as if it were a proper native application.

One of the most well-known companies that are using PWAs is Twitter. To install the Twitter app, you must first open the web version on the phone and then add it to your home screen. So, after you open the web version from your home screen, you can open the page as a progressive web app.

Fundamentals

PWAs are incredibly responsive and can be offered as a proper and shareable solution; hence they can work offline as well. In these PWAs, the CSS and HTML files can be stored in the browser cache, and then one can archive these files with the help of service workers. This will make it possible to properly use the web page when you don’t have a workable internet connection. Service workers are the components that are the most important parts of the PWA. Amongst other important features are the secure protocol HTTPS and Manifest File.

The service workers can be considered the core components of JavaScript that play a very important role in the proxy between the browser and the network in the first place. So, when you open the web page for the very first time, the service workers will be able to store the important data in the browser cache.

How Does It Work?

After the data has been stored, when you open the webpage for the second time, the service workers will be able to retrieve the data from the cache. This will work even before the app is allowed to check for network availability. Hence, users will not only be provided with the ability to use the app offline, but they can also take advantage of the quick response times. Apart from that, the service workers also tend to manage the push notifications in the PWAs.

Understanding the Other Features

Apart from the service workers, the Manifest File and the Secure HTTPS are also important components of the PWAs. The manifest file can be defined as a JSON file that contains all the information about the application in the first place. For example, it will provide data about the app’s home screen icon. In addition, the color palette, the short name, and other important features will be displayed. In case you are using an Android phone or a Chrome browser, the manifest file will be able to trigger the efficient installation of the PWA into the phone and that too automatically.

In the case of the HTTPS protocol, it is a definite must for the PWA formation. While service workers make the concept of PWA possible, some breaches and network errors might cause problems. Therefore, it is important to have a secure protocol component to ensure the application is completely secure.

Success Stories

You might be surprised that Twitter isn’t the only company that has benefitted from the PWAs in the first place. This technology has managed to help many popular businesses achieve success. Amongst the companies, some well-known names include Pinterest, The Weather Channel, The Home Depot, and Alibaba. This shows that PWAs are overtaking the development front with the amazing advantages and features they tend to provide the users. It is important to remember that technology ensures user satisfaction and a fantastic experience for businesses.

What Exactly Is An AMP?

The term AMP describes what we call an Accelerated Mobile Page. In simplest terms, an AMP is a mobile-friendly webpage. The design of the page is done in such a way that it can be loaded almost instantly. It is a smooth and quick loading solution that is a development by keeping the users’ experience in mind. The AMPs were introduced as an open-source product, and it was integrated into the strategy of Google in the year 2016.

The Guardian also announced that its platform would be available as an AMP. For the users to see what the AMPs could offer, they also displayed the article on the web and AMP versions. While there were some differences in the experience, they were pretty insignificant. But people could notice that the AMP version of the article loaded much faster than the web version.

Fundamentals

The main idea behind the introduction of AMPs was to reduce the amount of unnecessary content and the functionality to make sure that the app can display useful and essential content to the users. With the use of such technology, the usage of data can be reduced by ten times. There are three basic parts of the AMPs. These are the AMP HTML, the AMP Cache, and the AMP Components.

Understanding the Components of AMP

The AMP HTML can be considered the simplified version of the regular version. With the help of AMP HTM, one can refuse the use of certain elements and tags that HTML uses. For instance, AMP HTML doesn’t allow the use of forms. On the other hand, AMP Components are the basic scripts that enable the user to function without using JavaScript. So, it can be said without a doubt that the main idea behind the AMP Components is to make sure that JavaScript scripts aren’t used much since it can lead to the slow loading of the pages.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean that the page should remain without animations, analytics data, autocomplete suggestions, or modified layouts. On the contrary, a very extensive and detailed library of the different components can enable the users to implement these features along with many others.

What is AMP Cache?

Talking about the AMP Cache is one of the most important parts of AMP technology. It can be defined as a content delivery network that is proxy-based. It will fetch and cache the page content properly. With the help of AMP Cache, the developer can easily introduce the page updates. Furthermore, it will optimize and modify the AMP if required.

Success Stories

As we have discussed with the PWAs, some companies are very proud of the business advantages they are getting with the help of AMPs. Some of the most well-known companies that use AMPs for their business are Musement, CNBC, RCS Media Group, The Washington Post, and many others. Not just that, but many other companies are planning on implementing

As with PWAs, companies are often very proud of the business advantages that AMPs offer. Here is a collection of success stories and case studies of companies that used AMPs and benefited from them. Musement, RCS MediaGroup, CNBC, and The Washington Post are all companies that have implemented or plan to implement AMPs.

How Exactly Are PWAs and AMPs Similar to One Another?

The AMPs and PWAs can be defined as methods that help display different web pages on mobile devices. Both have been created to ensure that the user experience is improved in the best way. In addition, PWAs and AMPs can help reduce the pages’ loading time. While the AMPs can be a bit more effective regarding the loading speed of the PWAs, this difference isn’t much noticed.

Both of these amazing technologies have been supported actively by Google. The Google Developers have both an AMP page and the PWA page in their possession. While these might not be all the similarities between the technologies, we have covered the primary similarity in this section. Now that we know how these can be similar, it is now time to see how the technologies can be different from one another in the first place.

How Exactly Are PWAs and AMPs Different?

After talking about the similarities between these two technologies, there are some differences that one should focus on. Learning about the differences will help the users choose between AMPs and PWAs in the first place. So, in this section, we will talk about the points in which these technologies tend to differ.

1. Appearance

When using the PWA, you will not feel like using the web page. This is because PWAs tend to resemble the appearance and likeness of the mobile application. However, when it comes to AMPs, they tend to look like the web page, so you are well aware that you are looking at one. This is one of the main differences between the two.

2. Development

When we are talking about the development of technologies, there are some differences in the approach. For PWAs, the application code has to be written from the start, and even if that is not the case, the developers will be able to use only a minimal part of the existing code. However, in the case of AMPs, the developers will be able to use the existing code. All they have to do is strip the existing code of the JS and CSS parts that are unnecessary for the development. This will ensure that the web page can load much quicker and doesn’t use much data.

3. User Experience

The user experience is one of the most important things that people want when it comes to choosing any experience that is on mobile. Talking about the user experience of the PWAs, it is much better when compared to the AMPs in the first place. With the PWAs, the users will have push notifications and a home screen icon, and there aren’t any browser tabs.

Not to mention that these features are extremely easy to lead and hence are lighter in size than your actual mobile applications. PWAs will also tend to load faster than the actual web version since these are already properly embedded with the App Shell. In the case of PWAs, the app can also be used when the users don’t have a properly working network connection.

In the case of AMPs, the user experience might be slightly improved in the first place. This is because the page will load much faster than the regular page. However, this is the only advantage the users will get from the AMPs and nothing else. Unlike Progressive Web Applications, AMPs aren’t able to work in the offline mode. This is one of the main reasons why users tend to choose PWAs instead of AMPs.

4. Performance

SEO needs to be considered regarding the performance that both technologies show. This is where the AMPs tend to win the competition. Companies like Google favor such pages and wist them in the carousal for the top stories, which will help increase. However, PWAs, on the other hand, don’t have that direct advantage for SEO. However, when it comes to providing a better user experience, PWAs are the ones ahead, and hence this helps in increasing the retention rates. This directly aids in the SEO section, making PWAs a popular option.

5. Support

The PWAs aren’t supported in an equal manner across all the devices. So, there is a chance that you might find some slight inconveniences when you are trying to use a PWA in a proper iOS format. Also, there are many hardware functionalities that PWAs might not support, such as NFC, Accelerometers, GPS, and Bluetooth. All the major browsers support AMPs in the first place.

When it comes to PWAs, they tend to work in the best way for the applications that require more user interactions. For instance, social media, e-commerce, and several online learning platforms can use PWAs to their advantage. This is because these apps have to be constantly updated and responsive in the first place, which is why companies like Twitter tend to use this technology.

What are AMPs Suited For?

Well, AMPs are more suited for platforms with a wall of content, such as newspapers or online magazines. These AMPs can load the content instantly, but interaction opportunities are not that high. That is why companies like the Guardian tend to use this technology first.

Which is the Best: Progressive Web Apps or Accelerated Mobile Pages?

Now that you have seen the similarities and differences between Progressive Mobile Applications and Accelerated Mobile Pages, it is time to decide. Which one will be the better choice for a particular business? We have seen that the PWAs and AMPs are extremely powerful technologies that go way beyond the platform of mobile applications and webpages. So, one thing can be said to return to the question of PWAs vs. AMPs. The AMPS will be easier to develop and much faster for sure. Not to mention that these products are much easier to develop as well.

But on the other hand, PWAs will be able to offer more benefits such as performance, user experience, and much more. So, while neither can be a universal solution, it depends on the business and the type of features one is looking for.

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