Privacy and security are the biggest selling points of the web browser Brave. One important unique feature that the browser offers is the ability to “De-AMP” pages. This allows you to bypass Google’s redirection to AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) versions of the websites you visit.
Besides being annoying, Brave claim that AMP is a privacy risk. We’re going to explore what AMP is, how the De-AMP feature works, and how to enable it on your phone.
What Is AMP and How Does It Work?
AMP is the name of a technique Google uses to redirect you to stripped-down versions of the web pages you visit.
According to Google, AMP’s job is to enhance the user experience by improving website performance. Google caches AMP versions of websites and gives them priority over their original version in the search engine. By creating bare-bones web pages and working from Google’s servers, AMP pages are supposedly faster than the original versions.
Considering many of us have a reliable internet connection, and most modern websites are fast enough, the idea of seeing fewer features on websites you visit doesn’t make sense. Plus, it puts the website creator in the hands of Google, sacrificing design, functionality, and analytics.
You could use different methods to disable AMP on Google Search or use alternative search engines altogether. But if you don’t want to sacrifice the convenience of Google Search, Brave’s De-AMP feature should come in handy.
How the De-AMP Feature Works on Brave Browser
Besides the inferior aesthetics of AMP pages, Brave added De-AMP for privacy and security reasons. According to Brave, AMP should be of concern due to the following reasons:
- AMP compromises your privacy because it gives Google a broader view of your internet activity.
- Using AMP means you’re interacting directly with Google rather than the publisher and you might not realize it—this is bad for security.
- AMP deepens Google’s monopoly on the web.
- AMP doesn’t necessarily mean better performance of the websites you visit.
De-AMP means removing AMP versions of pages while using Brave. The browser achieves this by modifying loaded AMP versions of pages and pointing you back to the publisher version of these pages. It works at the search engine page level (Google Search in this case).
In addition, when you turn on De-AMP, Brave sniffs any page you’re loading for AMP code. If it detects the code being added to the page, Brave stops loading it instantly and loads the original version instead. All these things happen within milliseconds before you get to see the requested page.
How to Enable Brave Browser’s De-AMP Feature
To avoid loading AMP versions of web pages, follow the steps shown below:
- Open Brave.
- Select the three-dot menu button in the bottom-right of your screen.
- Tap Settings to access the settings menu.
- Go to Brave Shields & privacy.
- Toggle the Auto-redirect AMP pages setting on.
With this setting on, Brave will redirect every AMP page you knowingly or unknowingly load to its original version. If you want to revert to using AMP, follow the above steps and turn the Auto-redirect AMP pages setting off.
The Future of AMP
The De-AMP feature is a welcome feature to Brave. However, Google is still pushing the AMP project further. This means less control for you over the sites that you visit without a privacy-focused browser like Brave.
Most people use Google Chrome on their Android devices and therefore will continue to have AMP pushed on them. Brave is putting up a brave fight (pun not intended), but it’s an uphill battle against the behemoth that is Google.
In the meantime, take advantage of the De-AMP feature. With Brave, you don’t need to worry about the traditional AMP workaround procedures.