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Google Chrome's Lazy-Loading Images Data Saving Feature Made More Efficient

The lazy loading changes have been backported to the most recent versions of Google Chrome.

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Google Chrome's Lazy-Loading Images Data Saving Feature Made More Efficient

Photo Credit: Google/ Addy Osmani

Google Chrome's lazy loading feature has a new threshold for better data savings

Highlights
  • Besides data, the Chrome tweak will also increase website loading speed
  • Chrome's distance-from-viewpoint threshold has been reduced
  • Lazy loading will behave closer to JavaScript loading libraries

Google Chrome has made its lazy-loading feature even more efficient than what it was when first rolled out last year. Lazy loading feature allows you to save data as it loads images on the site only when you are about to view them. The distance-from-viewpoint threshold has now been reduced to 1250px from 3000px for fast connections (e.g 4G), and to 2500px from 4000px on slower connections (e.g 3G).

Google Engineering Manager Addy Osmani wrote on his blog about the change, saying that the new thresholds will offer much better data-savings now. The changes have been backported to users of recent versions of Google Chrome (79-85), so that they can avail of the latest update.

Instead of loading all images as soon as you open a webpage, Google Chrome lazy loading loads the content only when you scroll and have it in view. Until you scroll down, the image will not load. This saves data, and also saves on delays in the initial website start ups. It is recommended Web developers to avoid setting lazy-loading for images visible in the first viewport, and to add it for the positions below.

The tweak will behave closer to what is offered by JavaScript lazy-loading libraries like lazysizes, which saves even more data. However, Google Chrome's lazy-loading images guarantees that the content will be loaded when the user has scrolled down to them, and they will not have to wait. Google Chrome has supported lazy-loading images since Chrome 76 was rolled out a year ago.

Google Chrome will now also support the lazy loading of iframe content. By using lazy loading, third-party embeds like Spotify widgets and YouTube videos will be visible only when the users scroll down to it, saving data and increasing the speed of the initial webpage loading time.


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Further reading: Google, Google Chrome, lazy loading
Tanishka Sodhi Tanishka Sodhi is a sub-editor at Gadgets 360. As a journalist, she has covered education, culture, and media and mental health. She is interested in the intersection of technology and culture, and its impact on everyday lives. Tanishka is a staunch advocate of gender equality, and the correct use of commas. You can get in touch with her via Twitter at @tanishka_s2 or drop a mail at tanishkas@ndtv.com. More
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