Skip to main content

Brave browser battles Google with new De-AMP feature

Brave Browser Arm64
Brave Browser Arm64 (Image credit: Daniel Rubino/Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • The Brave browser now includes a De-AMP feature that redirects links away from the AMP versions of sites.
  • Google pushes AMP pages, which are considered controversial since they render websites through Google's servers rather than through the sites of the original publishers of content.
  • Brave calls AMP "harmful to users and to the Web at large" in the post announcing its De-AMP feature.

Brave is rolling out a new feature for its browser that bypasses Google-hosted AMP pages. The De-AMP feature is available in the Nightly and Beta builds of Brave now and will be enabled by default in the future 1.38 release of the desktop and Android versions of the browser.

AMP links were originally created to optimize websites for mobile devices, but they are considered controversial. When a user clicks an AMP link, they are taken to a page hosted by Google's servers rather than by the site of the content producer.

Brave claimed that AMP is "harmful to users and to the Web at large." The company argued that AMP is harmful to privacy, bad for security, and that it furthers the "monopolization of the Web" by Google.

"Brave will protect users from AMP in several ways. Where possible, De-AMP will rewrite links and URLs to prevent users from visiting AMP pages altogether," explained Brave. "And in cases where that is not possible, Brave will watch as pages are being fetched and redirect users away from AMP pages before the page is even rendered, preventing AMP/Google code from being loaded and executed."

While the next version of AMP does not have an official name at this point, Brave refers to it as AMP 2.0 and claims that it "will be even worse" than the current version of AMP. "This effort isn't formally called AMP 2.0, but the goals are the same: allow more of the Web to be served from Google's servers, and in ways that give users less control over how they interact with that content, and with less understanding of where that content is coming from."

Brave has a history of going against Google. It launched Brave Search in June 2021 and was one of several companies that took a stand against Google's FLoC.

(opens in new tab)

Brave (opens in new tab)

Brave is a privacy-focused browser with a built-in ad blocker and a tool for preventing tracking. The Nightly and Beta builds of Brave now include a De-AMP feature that's enabled by default.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

7 Comments
  • Google's AMP is why we need a third mobile ecosystem powered by Windows, damn it Microsoft.
  • I'm looking for a lumia and get rid of google forever
    I'm on social welfare but I'm pay for for software and music, I have to make hard decisions when I buy.
    I can only spend my money once.
  • Getting a Lumia is probably not the best choice then. I chose to get a Google Pixel, but then added a different launcher and disabled most Google apps and services. I really like the phone, and it gets monthly security updates. Firefox mobile works great for me, and I use a number of Microsoft services for email/cloud, etc. You don't even have to use the Play Store if you don't want, with options available like the Amazon Store, among others.
  • @Dradzk that approach doesn't work. even if you disable Googles services. There are embedded apis that will run in the background no matter what. I had two brand new S20s exhibit the same behavior - I opted out everything during the out of box experience and the phones ran extremely slow, sluggish and very hot. Both were factory reset, one - nothing was opted out, the other everything again opt-ed out. The former did not exhibit any of the weirdness. The other? No change until factory reset and nothing opted out. Since the phones were needed by family members asap I had to begrudgingly leave things opted in. I can only attest to what i've seen over the years and it's a mixed bag just like ios and wm/wp. If you want Zero Google's mobile services and don't want an iphone. Either AOSP android phone or Sailfish X. As only these will provide official support for the new apk format albeit after a long time.
  • I'm not "techy enough" to really dig into everything and verify that my choices are being honored, but just my personal experience is my 4a is running fine with everything being opted out of. The only Google services I use are maps and the Play Store. Everything seems to be running smoothly.
  • @Peter A London The only viable alternative is sadly is Sailfish X by Jolla (Former Nokia folk or Nokians). As It runs android apps containerised almost completely. However it's £40 or so for 'a non transferable single device license'. That's how Jolla are able to offer broad android compatibility The draw back is tokens and push notifications for authentication apps don't work most of the time even in app. Also, you can no longer access the android sub systems settings - only app specific. This is a pain if your work place is run mindless idiots who insist you use authenticator apps on personal phones to use Office365 at work. Also since Google's Mobile Suit is not installed, any apps that check for GMS and then prompt you to close the app - Don't run. This means no banking app will run as they follow app guidelines to the T. The positive is that the experience is completely google mobile suite free and you can install GMS if you want. If you really want to pick up a Lumia, your best bet is the 950XL or Elite X3 however I wouldn't pay more than £30 for the 950XL and £50 for the Elite X3.
  • Good ol’ Scroogle. Won’t touch their spying products if I can help it.