As promised, Google is making a change to how it displays
Accelerated Mobile Pages, so that users can easily view and share
links that lead directly to publishers’ sites rather than to
Google’s copy of the content.
A little easier, but I would argue that they shouldn’t be doing this in the first place, and the new UI they’ve exposed is deliberately obfuscated.
Now, the URL field of a browser will continue to show a Google
URL. However, the AMP header area will display a link or chain
icon, what it calls the “anchor” button. Clicking on this will
make the publisher’s direct URL appear, so that it can be easily
copied and pasted.
This new “anchor” icon is cryptic, and I think deliberately so. It looks like nothing I’ve ever seen before. I wouldn’t have guessed that it was a button to show the real URL, and I am a designer who studies iconography and a critic of AMP’s google.com silo. I’ve wanted this feature to exist ever since AMP debuted but I wouldn’t have guessed that this was it. Lord only knows how many regular people will figure it out. (And, bizarrely, the icon isn’t even retina resolution. It looks like a blurry smudge on the screen.)
For those who hold down on the anchor button, Google says it will
trigger the native share feature of the browser being used. With
Safari, that means easy access to things like Twitter or Facebook.
With Chrome, it lacks native share, so nothing should happen.
Better than nothing (which is what we had before), but weak sauce nonetheless.
★ Tuesday, 7 February 2017