Safari in iOS 11 strips Google AMP links down to original URL for sharing

Posted:
in iPhone edited August 2017
When iOS 11 launches this fall, users sharing Google AMP pages from Safari will find Apple's operating system automatically remove Google's proprietary URL in favor of the webpage's original format.




The new feature, spotted by MacStories editor Federico Viticci, is present in the latest version of iOS 11 beta that was released on Monday.

Unveiled in 2015, Google AMP, or Accelerated Mobile Pages, is a custom-developed framework for rendering lightweight webpages designed for mobile consumption. Online media entities, including AppleInsider, offer support for AMP, allowing readers to quickly access stories through Google search.

Stripped down to text, rich graphics and video, AMP pages normally sport special links that in many cases do not relate to an originating article's URL. AppleInsider AMP pages do point to the original URL, but pages served up by other media outlets do not.

Currently, users who share AMP pages from iPhone and iPad are forced to share Google's non-standard URLs, which in turn leads recipients to the AMP page. This behavior will change in iOS 11.

"Very nice: when sharing AMP pages to iMessage or Reading List, iOS 11 Safari automatically removes AMP's crap from the URL. Go Apple," Viticci said in a tweet on Wednesday.

As Viticci notes, Safari in iOS 11 reformats AMP's specialized links when sharing story URLs. The feature appears to go further than simply stripping out text, however, as Google obscures or does not include original URL in its AMP page URLs.

For example, the URL for The Verge referenced in Viticci's tweet begins with "www.theverge.com/platform/amp," which leads to the AMP page for that particular story. In another example, USA Today typically formats its AMP pages with "amp.usatoday.com," followed by a story identification number.

In both cases, Safari must perform a backend process to suss out the AMP page's originating URL, then deliver that information in text form for sharing.

Apple is slated to release iOS 11 this fall with a bevy of new features, user interface tweaks and performance enhancements.
Level40urjohnenglishHBW1
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 30
    Could this story be written in a more straightforward way? I still don't why I need to be concerned about any of this.
    randominternetpersonHBW1
  • Reply 2 of 30
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,585member
    Probably a good thing. While AMP is certainly one way to speed up a sometimes ridiculously slow-loading mobile web it may not be the BEST way. Simply downranking sites with bloated pages would have accomplished a lot of it without resorting to the "open-source" (wink-wink) AMP. 

    So yeah, good on Google for recognizing the problem and offering a fix. Bad on Google for essentially mandating a fix. 
    edited August 2017 jbdragonMuntzrevenantsergiozLevel40ur
  • Reply 3 of 30
    irelandireland Posts: 17,584member
    Fuck Google
    jbdragonlostkiwiSpamSandwichMuntzzeus423christopher126pscooter63williamlondondysamoriaLevel40ur
  • Reply 4 of 30
    A good first step. It would be better if they give you the option to force loading of the actual page while in Safari (maybe this is coming). I despise AMP pages. More often than not I want the actual URL (for sharing) or to visit the actual site because I want to get additional information from that site.
    Muntzmike54ndirishfan1975entropysnoelosirelandwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 30
    So happy that this is happening. AMP pages were were the thing that made me switch my default search engine. I won't be returning to google but a good move anyway. 
    wcmattwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 30
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,142member
    Good. Fuck AMP. Hijacks original URL. 
    pscooter63williamlondonLevel40urStrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 30
    I'm curious, will this turn out to be a cat and mouse game? Will google update the way it formats the AMP URLs so that Apples method no longer works until they can update it? So on and so on?
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 8 of 30
    It's not clear what's proprietary about 

    www.theverge.com/platform/amp

    or 

    amp.usatoday.com

    Both are hosted on the original domain of the publisher. AMP is simply a set of Javascript libraries to minimize the amount of extra code that has to be loaded with every page request.

    Moreover, Google Chrome on mobile devices (both iOS and Android) already does this:

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/2/6/14524424/google-amp-update-share-link

    For each AMP page, the link button on top reveals (and copies) the canonical version as intended by the publisher (and the URL does become visible when you click it on Chrome). The reason for this is exactly that the publisher domains conveys trust. Presumably, Safari uses exactly the same mechanism as Chrome to get the non-AMP version of a page.



    williamlondonmazda 3savon b7
  • Reply 9 of 30
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    Eight...
    It's not clear what's proprietary about 

    www.theverge.com/platform/amp

    or 

    amp.usatoday.com

    Both are hosted on the original domain of the publisher. AMP is simply a set of Javascript libraries to minimize the amount of extra code that has to be loaded with every page request.

    Moreover, Google Chrome on mobile devices (both iOS and Android) already does this:

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/2/6/14524424/google-amp-update-share-link

    For each AMP page, the link button on top reveals (and copies) the canonical version as intended by the publisher (and the URL does become visible when you click it on Chrome). The reason for this is exactly that the publisher domains conveys trust. Presumably, Safari uses exactly the same mechanism as Chrome to get the non-AMP version of a page.



    Regurgitating Google talking points don't help you.
    Its a POS tech simple as that. No use at all. The verge should never be used for any tech thing EVER.
    StrangeDaysirelandericthehalfbeewatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 30
    AWESOME. Nice work Apple! I've had this exact annoyance. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 30
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 2,139member
    Good. AMP was the last straw for me with Google. I stopped using Google search for anything but images (most notably reverse image search). I use DuckDuckGo now. Its image search is functional but inferior. Google's search was already pissing me off by how it makes too many presumptions and ignores quotes, etc.

    AMP was a completely enraging experience. AMP pages don't scroll like normal Safari pages, reader doesn't work on them, links don't work right in them, and they hid the original URL. The updated version that shows the original URL in a header bar is half broken most of the time. Complete garbage. I'm not going to consume the internet while filtered through a crippling pile of garbage like AMP. 

    Screw Google. They're just another freakishly huge and overbearing corporate monster that thinks it knows what's best for humanity. Their whole business model is to make product out of their users. I wish I wasn't so invested in their gmail service. I should move my saved messages to a local archive. The day Google rids themselves of Gmail, a LOT of internet users will be screwed.
    noelosviclauyycwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 30
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    dysamoria said:
    Good. AMP was the last straw for me with Google. I stopped using Google search for anything but images (most notably reverse image search). I use DuckDuckGo now. Its image search is functional but inferior. Google's search was already pissing me off by how it makes too many presumptions and ignores quotes, etc.

    AMP was a completely enraging experience. AMP pages don't scroll like normal Safari pages, reader doesn't work on them, links don't work right in them, and they hid the original URL. The updated version that shows the original URL in a header bar is half broken most of the time. Complete garbage. I'm not going to consume the internet while filtered through a crippling pile of garbage like AMP. 

    Screw Google. They're just another freakishly huge and overbearing corporate monster that thinks it knows what's best for humanity. Their whole business model is to make product out of their users. I wish I wasn't so invested in their gmail service. I should move my saved messages to a local archive. The day Google rids themselves of Gmail, a LOT of internet users will be screwed.
    They're blackmailing sites to becoming mere sources to their meta producing crapware and thus losing complete control over their own products, users and user experience..
    How, because they list your further on Google if you don't suck their ****. The EU should look into kicking them solidly solid..
    Basically what they've done for every other data producer.
    edited August 2017 watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 30
    noelosnoelos Posts: 103member
    dysamoria said:
    Good. AMP was the last straw for me with Google. I stopped using Google search for anything but images (most notably reverse image search). I use DuckDuckGo now. Its image search is functional but inferior. Google's search was already pissing me off by how it makes too many presumptions and ignores quotes, etc.

    AMP was a completely enraging experience. AMP pages don't scroll like normal Safari pages, reader doesn't work on them, links don't work right in them, and they hid the original URL. The updated version that shows the original URL in a header bar is half broken most of the time. Complete garbage. I'm not going to consume the internet while filtered through a crippling pile of garbage like AMP. 

    Screw Google. They're just another freakishly huge and overbearing corporate monster that thinks it knows what's best for humanity. Their whole business model is to make product out of their users. I wish I wasn't so invested in their gmail service. I should move my saved messages to a local archive. The day Google rids themselves of Gmail, a LOT of internet users will be screwed.
    Agree with all the above. I dipped my toe in the water with Gmail but am so glad I stayed off it. I’m happy to pay (Fastmail.com) to run this important service and I maintain my own domain-name so I’m not tied to them either.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 30
    noelosnoelos Posts: 103member
    A good first step. It would be better if they give you the option to force loading of the actual page while in Safari (maybe this is coming).
    Agree - make it an option to do a “Reload without AMP” or automatically unwrap the AMP every time (which would be my preference).

    Wonder if this will affect the $3b Google supposedly pays Apple to be the default search engine.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 30
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,585member
    noelos said:
    A good first step. It would be better if they give you the option to force loading of the actual page while in Safari (maybe this is coming).
    Agree - make it an option to do a “Reload without AMP” or automatically unwrap the AMP every time (which would be my preference).

    Wonder if this will affect the $3b Google supposedly pays Apple to be the default search engine.
    Can't imagine why it would. It won't affect Google Search revenue at all one way or the other will it? 
  • Reply 16 of 30
    B) I applaud Apple for doing this, AMP is one of the biggest annoyances when using Safari on iOS to share/save articles. 

    Just give me the real damn link!
    edited August 2017 watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 30
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,585member
    Level40ur said:
    B) I applaud Apple for doing this, AMP is one of the biggest annoyances when using Safari on iOS to share/save articles. 

    Just give me the real damn link!
    Making it easier and more reliable in accessing the original might be good enough for some. I rarely share an article and yes some sites are bloated pieces of crap but have that one article you want  to read. There's a increasingly evident problem with some sites and mobile load speeds but AMP in its current form doesn't seem like the fix, and besides that some site owners don't want their pages stripped down to essentials for various reasons.

    As I mentioned earlier perhaps simply down-ranking bloat-sites would be enough to push website admins and designers to think more about how they are designing their pages instead of throwing so many different elements on one.  I do think something needs to be done to make mobile web search faster. No evening goes by that I don't find myself while doing a search killing a page-load or two that chokes or takes far too long to load. 
  • Reply 18 of 30
    dmdevdmdev Posts: 31member
    Speaking of ads leaving bad experiences. There's some ad on AppleInsider that keeps scrolling my screen to see it...while I'm trying to read (and even comment on this post)
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 30
    noelos said:
    dysamoria said:
    Good. AMP was the last straw for me with Google. I stopped using Google search for anything but images (most notably reverse image search). I use DuckDuckGo now. Its image search is functional but inferior. Google's search was already pissing me off by how it makes too many presumptions and ignores quotes, etc.

    AMP was a completely enraging experience. AMP pages don't scroll like normal Safari pages, reader doesn't work on them, links don't work right in them, and they hid the original URL. The updated version that shows the original URL in a header bar is half broken most of the time. Complete garbage. I'm not going to consume the internet while filtered through a crippling pile of garbage like AMP. 

    Screw Google. They're just another freakishly huge and overbearing corporate monster that thinks it knows what's best for humanity. Their whole business model is to make product out of their users. I wish I wasn't so invested in their gmail service. I should move my saved messages to a local archive. The day Google rids themselves of Gmail, a LOT of internet users will be screwed.
    Agree with all the above. I dipped my toe in the water with Gmail but am so glad I stayed off it. I’m happy to pay (Fastmail.com) to run this important service and I maintain my own domain-name so I’m not tied to them either.
    Any suggestions for personal email account? Pay or free
    mobirdOfer
  • Reply 20 of 30
    It's not clear what's proprietary about 

    www.theverge.com/platform/amp

    or 

    amp.usatoday.com

    Both are hosted on the original domain of the publisher. AMP is simply a set of Javascript libraries to minimize the amount of extra code that has to be loaded with every page request.

    Moreover, Google Chrome on mobile devices (both iOS and Android) already does this:

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/2/6/14524424/google-amp-update-share-link

    For each AMP page, the link button on top reveals (and copies) the canonical version as intended by the publisher (and the URL does become visible when you click it on Chrome). The reason for this is exactly that the publisher domains conveys trust. Presumably, Safari uses exactly the same mechanism as Chrome to get the non-AMP version of a page.




    Please, not another Google shill.

    So I have to load the AMP page first, and then click on the link to reload the full page after wasting time and bandwidth loading the AMP page I had no intention of viewing?

    How come you can't see the sheer stupidity of this?
    watto_cobra
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