Sometimes, you just need to throttle down on your data consumption when browsing. Maybe you’re tethering a computer to your smartphone and don’t want to gobble up plan data, or are on a public WiFi network. Maybe the WiFi in your hotel is slow. Whatever the case, it’s sometimes best to use as little data as possible to get the job done. To that, Google has unveiled a beta Chrome extension that will compress webpage data for you.
In a quick test, we found the Data Saver extension to not have a noticeable effect on performance. You still get full images, and the load time isn’t noticeably slower. The Next Web reports up to 45% less data used with Data Saver.
It should be noted (again) the extension is beta, and doesn’t yet support HTTPS or Incognito mode. Right now, it’s great at navigating the web at-large, but anything tucked behind a password is likely not going to work for saving your data consumption.
In addition to the desktop experience, the beta feature is also available for Android and iOS Chrome browsers. Under the settings menu, find ‘Data Saver’, and enable it.
An exciting new feature, try not to get too excited for this one to become standard. It’s lack of HTTPS support can hopefully be remedied, but Google is always toying with new features for Chrome. It could, like so many before it, vanish or languish in ‘beta’.