This sounds like implementing this would lead to some pretty significant development overhead. If you are tasked with building a brochure website for a small business, are there still advantages to this?
I hope that PWA tech starts to become easy enough to handle in order to become ubiquitous, but for now the answer really depends on your audience. A PWA can prove "worth it" for audiences with spotty internet connections (offline mode with service workers) and/or for audiences with modern browsers.
In my opinion, PWAs are the future of the web – an app that lives at a URL instead of on your phone, essentially, and blurs the lines of what's "native." Servers are more and more often serving only data via an API as opposed to rendered HTML files which leads to less bandwidth used and a faster experience.
What would you use a service worker for a on brochure website (using Greg’s example)?
In my state there are hundreds of thousands using internet that’s spotty at best. Sub-1mbs connections that are often blanket rural wifi or satellite (high latency).
By using a service worker and an app frame, you can cache the critical aspects of the site, including content, upon initial load which allows the user to go on browsing even if their connection is weak.
And it doesn’t specifically cater to those with that need, it makes for a much faster browsing experience even for modern connections. I’ve seen studies showing that for every half-second decrease in perceived load time, revenue goes up 7%.
All this being said, do what makes sense for the situation. If a brochure site can do its job as a one page HTML doc and you see no benefit to the extra overhead, then it’s no skin from anyone’s back. PWA tech is still being figured out and most browsers don’t support a lot of the requirements.
Thanks. That’s a good example.
Shouldn’t browser caching solve that fairly well? Using a service worker means the site can periodically update in the background. Doesn’t that mean it’ll typically use more bandwidth, not less?
(FWIW, my connection here is not good, and it’s very obvious when a site was built by someone with a fast connection who didn’t consider those without one.)
Pretty interesting roundup, not had much of an opportunity to play around with PWA stuff so be nice to hear more pro's and cons from community here too.