Chrome Canary Now Offers 'Lazy Loading' For Faster Browsing

A feature called 'lazy loading' is rolling out to Chrome's Canary channel as part of Google's ongoing efforts to ensure its browser is the best and fastest available. The process involves focusing on loading text and other elements that are already on the user's screen before beginning to load those further down a given page. More directly, any text takes precedence over images and other frames. For clarity, the concept behind lazy loading has been in use by some web developers for more than ten years, so this isn't a new idea at all. However, its implementation into one of the world's most popular browsers will mean that almost every website is enhanced by the functionality rather than just those who explicitly embed it into their code. For Android users, Chrome has already been taking advantage of the feature to a large degree since earlier this year.

Google reportedly says lazy loading was shown to speed up page loading by between 18-percent and 35-percent. It should also save data, presumably because most website visits don't necessarily require much scrolling, with users clicking past the home page and others relatively quickly. While there are no guarantees that the feature will ever move out of beta, turning it on in the less stable versions of Chrome where it is currently available is fairly straightforward. Users will need to turn on two separate flags in the hidden settings menu found at 'chrome://flags' since lazy loading is split into two different functions for testing. A search for both '#enable-lazy-frame-loading' and 'enable-lazy-image-loading' on that site will show the appropriate flags to enable. Chrome will need to be restarted after each is activated.

There's currently no timeframe for lazy loading features to appear in the more stable developer or stable versions of its browser. In the meantime, the company is also working to ensure that web developers who want to avoid lazy loading for whatever reason are not forced into it. That means working in collaboration with the World Wide Web Consortium web standards organization to devise HTML code that will deactivate it. As of this writing, the focus of those efforts is reportedly centered around individual elements. For example, the code would be embedded in a specific frame to prevent lazy loading from impacting that element, allowing it to load immediately.

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Daniel Golightly

Senior Staff Writer
Daniel has been writing for AndroidHeadlines since 2016. As a Senior Staff Writer for the site, Daniel specializes in reviewing a diverse range of technology products and covering topics related to Chrome OS and Chromebooks. Daniel holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Software Engineering and has a background in Writing and Graphics Design that drives his passion for Android, Google products, the science behind the technology, and the direction it's heading. Contact him at Daniel.Go[email protected]
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