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Google Announces End of PageSpeed, but Other Options Remain

In 2015 Google has announced that it will shut down PageSpeed. One of the most popular page optimization tools on the market is going away.

One of the most popular page optimization tools on the market is going away.

On Tuesday, Google announced that its PageSpeed Service, which is used by developers of 14,831 websites (according to Datanyze) to analyze and optimize their site according the best practices of the performance industry, will be shut down to new sites effective immediately, with current users having to change their DNS and remove their sites from the service by Monday, August 3. Failing to do so by that date will render the site completely unavailable. PageSpeed will also be removed from its integration within the Google App Engine by December 1, though in that regard, the app will simply lose the benefit of the PageSpeed optimizations rather than become unavailable.

The optimization techniques that PageSpeed has offered its users for the past four and a half years have included compressing images, optimizing JavaScript and CSS files, and caching static content that can then be delivered by Google’s worldwide servers. However, the company hasn’t been putting much effort on keeping up with competition in the space like CloudFlare (a paid service which has an added emphasis on security), and has thus decided to “re-focus their efforts elsewhere.”

PageSpeed was certainly not without its flaws, including a blind spot in the Defer JavaScript module, as well as confusion about the scores that it bestowed across different browsers. Yet the fact that it housed all these optimization techniques within one service – which happened to be free – has been one of the biggest appeals of using PageSpeed.

In addition to CloudFlare, there are a number of free alternatives that developers can turn to in the wake of this announcement. Various hosting providers offer PageSpeed as part of their services. This is a great option due to simplicity for those it is available to. Similarly, many web servers can include PageSpeed modules, such as Apache, Nginx, IIS, and OpenLiteSpeed. Additionally, some CDNs include either PageSpeed or similar functionality.

Whichever route(s) you take, sites that have been using PageSpeed know that they need to replicate the optimization techniques that they were utilizing in order to maintain the standard of web performance that their users have come to expect.

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