Mobile browsing has improved a lot in recent years, and while coverage in many areas of the world has been improved in that time, for instance with the introduction of LTE, bandwidth is still a bottleneck in many parts of the world.
Opera Software identified this a long time ago and created Opera Turbo to help Opera users out by sending traffic through a proxy server that compresses what is being transferred to the user's device. While primarily designed for its mobile browsers, Opera Turbo is also available in desktop versions of Opera so that Opera users who live or work in areas with bad Internet coverage can speed up their Internet browsing as well.
According to Francois Beaufort, Google is currently experimenting with a similar feature for Chrome for Android. The feature is currently not enabled by default and needs to be enabled with a switch that turns the compression technology on.
Chrome users on Android who want to try out the feature need to run the following command to enable it:
adb shell 'echo "chrome --enable-spdy-proxy-auth" > /data/local/tmp/content-shell-command-line'
You basically need to turn on USB Debugging on the phone or tablet, and use the Android SDK to run the command after you have connected the device to the system.
Google according to Francois is using Google SPDY proxy servers to reduce data consumption by loading optimized web pages
Google has not revealed many information about the feature other than that yet. We do not know how much bandwidth users will save when they enable the feature, if it will run over all Internet traffic or if secure connections are exempt, and whether it will make its way into the desktop version of the Chrome browser as well.
Since it is currently being evaluated, it is not even clear if it will become a permanent feature in Chrome. If it does though, it may certainly be a welcome addition for Android users.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.