AMP user experience updates include video, lists, more


Google announced the AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) project to improve the user experience on mobile devices in 2015. Since then, the web publishing framework has advanced significantly to support a large array of on-page elements and options including support for ads, analytics, interactive elements, dynamic geo-targeting and more. This week, the team released an overview of the updates that have rolled out since January.

Video improvements

Minimize video. You can now set a video to minimize to the corner of the viewport when a user scrolls. This is useful in cases where it’s important to allow a user to read text at the same time a video is playing, for example, while following the instructions in a recipe.

Include video ads. The component now provides an easy way for publishers to monetize video by including ads from any video ad network.

User interface improvements

Resize lists. Developers can now specify when they want a container to resize when a user interacts with content.

Infinite scroll. When the user reaches the end of a list of items (search results, product cards, etc), the list can now be populated with more items.

Input masking in forms. Input masking allows developers to build in enhancements that makes it easier for a user to fill out forms. For example, automatically putting spaces in place when a user fills out a date or credit card or phone number.

Better transitions in lightbox mode. Lightbox mode allows a user to expand a component to fill the viewport, until it is closed again by the user. Until recently this has been technically challenging; the new improvements make it easier for developers to use lightbox mode with various types of images.

Other improvements

  • AMP now allows Consent Management Platforms to easily integrate with AMP, and allows publishers to show their own consent UI inside AMP.
  • Publishers can now display localized dates for users, so users can see publishing dates for an article in their local time.
  • AMP Stories now allow publishers to enhance a Google ad request with additional targeting information.

Why you should care. AMP continues to gain functionality. That doesn’t mean there isn’t still skepticism and hesitation to adopt the Google-backed protocol given there are still limitations, but the regular addition of new features means they should at least keep it on their radar. The AMP team said it will be publishing an overview soon on what’s new in the AMP Stories format, including support for links, a hamburger menu, hold to pause, a new desktop UI, and attachments.

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