Google saw the truth in the "less is more" saying, so it adapted its compression algorithms to allow its Google Chrome mobile users to spend as little mobile data as possible, when streaming.
Two years ago, the Mountain View-based company released a compression algorithm dubbed Zopfli which was warmly received by the IT community. The algorithm was so efficient that it started showing results in a myriad of areas, ranging from web content preprocessing to compression solutions for image optimization.
Google lately announced that it learned a lot from Zopfli and from the current needs of web developers around the world, and decided to open source a new algorithm to prove it.
Meet Brotli, the newest compression algorithm baked in Google's laboratory, that the company boasts can outclass Zopfli by 20 to 26 percent.
As the company previously explained, Brotli is no less than "a whole new data format" that is able to pack significantly more data while also decompressing it at a competitive speed.
"The smaller compressed size allows for better space utilization and faster page loads," the team that compiled the algorithm points out.
The only drawback of the technology is that data-squeezing is rather slow, but web developers overcome this via static elements.
Google underlines that mobile users who surf the web via Chrome are at an advantage, as Brotli will enable "lower data transfer fees and reduced battery use." The search engine company notes that web font compression gets handled much easier thanks to Brotli.
Google did not say exactly when the new compression algorithm will land on our systems, but it did announce that the code is in "intent to ship" state. This means that there is a fair chance to see it embedded in the next Chrome version.
However, Chrome is not the only mobile web browser that implements advanced compression algorithms.
In October 2015, Opera Max introduced video saving algorithms for Netflix and YouTube apps. One month later, Opera followed-up with features targeted at data savings for music apps. Users who played music through Gaana, Saavn, YouTube Music, Pandora and Slacker Radio noticed that their mobile data packages offered them a lot more music for the same data plan.
To be precise, the latest version of Opera Max offered its users a decrease of up to 50 percent in data usage when streaming music through the apps, effectively doubling their mobile data packages' worth.
"We have added audio compression for these music apps so that people will feel free to stream music without having to look constantly for available, free Wi-Fi coverage," Sergey Lossev, product manager at Opera Software, said at the time.
Google might have something to learn from Opera Max's data saving feature, which can function on both cellular data connections and Wi-Fi. This means that Opera users are able to save data whenever it suits them, regardless of where they are.
The latest version of Opera Max can be downloaded from Google Play, and its developers estimate that the browser will top the 100 million downloads by 2017.
There are no official numbers on Google Chrome's expected download numbers, but compression algorithms seem to make a difference when users' data (and money) are concerned.