Google today announced that it has worked with Facebook and Mozilla (the organization behind the Firefox browser), to make page reloads in Chrome for desktop and mobile significantly faster. According to Google’s data, reloading sites with the latest version of Chrome should now be about 28 percent faster.
Typically, when you reload a page (and that’s a feature even the earliest browsers had), the browser ends up making hundreds of network requests just to see if the images and other resources it cached the first time you went to a site are still valid.
As Google engineer Takashi Toyoshima notes in today’s announcement, users typically reload pages because they either look broken or because the content looks like it should have been updated (think old-school live blogs). He argues that when browser developers first added this feature, it was mostly because broken pages were common. Today, users mostly reload pages because the content of a site seems stale.
To overcome this issue, the team simplified Chrome’s reload behavior and it now only validates the main resource. Facebook, just like other pages, says its pages now reload 28 percent faster, too, so the next time you want to check if your friends finally posted new pictures of their cute corgis to Facebook (and you are using the web app instead of the native FB app), you’ll now get the answer faster.