For now, you’ll have to search a specific publisher from your mobile phone, or by following a test link on a mobile web browser to a test version of the new format. Well now, Google is going a step further by introducing AMP Stories. “The collective desire was that this format offer new, creative and visually rich ways of storytelling specifically designed for mobile”, Google stated in its blog post on February 13. Most importantly, Google AMP Stories are meant to be engaging and fast, sparing the reader from lags and loading circles.
“AMP Stories have extraordinary potential to enhance how we create mobile content”, said Doug Parker, VP of digital design at Meredith.
Google has plans to expand AMP stories across search results at a later date, as well as bring the new content type to more of its products. Scroll down and you will see a carousel of “Visual Stories” (AMP stories) from Mashable.com flagged both with the Visual Stories title and the AMP lighnting flash icon. Google also started to show a site’s actual URLs instead of just AMP URLs for easier identification.
AMP for Email is open-source so developers can freely play around with the capabilities and use them to their advantage. Described as “tappable, full-screen content” it taps into one of the more popular current languages of online storytelling, with tightly integrated photos and video, animations, and more. AMP Stories are built on the technical infrastructure of AMP, allowing publishers to use techniques like pre-renderable pages, optimized video loading and caching to optimize delivery. However, when users scroll down, they should be able to find the new “Visual Stories” section, as pointed out by 9To5Google. AMP stories are more like web pages now. To give AMP Stories a try, head over to g.co/ampstories and search for a content provider from the above list to take a peek at what it will look like.
While I’m not sure if publishers will fully embrace this format, I have to admit that the existing AMP stories I looked at made for a nice diversion. That should technically allow for a much smoother viewing of these stories.