Tag: Google

Google Stats Now Showing Over 8% IPv6

A nice way to end a Friday afternoon… I happened to look at Google’s IPv6 statistics for the first time in a while and see that they’ve climbed up over 8%!

Google IPv6 statsWe’ve kind of stopped celebrating each individual percentage point because the reality is the graph just keeps on going up and to the right in the direction we want!

Still, this was a nice way to end the work week.  Looking forward to celebrating a bit more when they hit 10%!

P.S. As the graph shows, IPv6 at this point is on the trajectory where it is just going to happen … if you haven’t already started figuring out what to do, please do look at our Start Here page to understand how you can get started transitioning your networks, devices and applications to make sure they’re ready!

Updated "Directory Dilemma" Article Now On CircleID…

Back in December, 2014, I published a post here called "The Directory Problem - The Challenge For Wire, Talko And Every Other "Skype-Killer" OTT App". After receiving a good bit of feedback, I've now published a new version over on CircleID:
The Directory Dilemma - Why Facebook, Google and Skype May Win the Mobile App War

I incorporated a good bit of the feedback I received and also brought in some newer numbers and statistics. Of note, I now have a section on WebRTC where I didn't before. You'll also notice a new emphasis in the title... I'm now talking about the potential winners versus the challengers. I also chose "Directory Dilemma" not only for the alliteration but also because the situation really isn't as much a "problem" as it is an overall "dilemma". It may or may not be a "problem".

I'm not done yet.

I'm still seeking feedback. I intend to do yet another revision of this piece, but in doing so intend to:

  • Change it from the informal tone at the beginning to more of a "paper" style;
  • Include a bit more about potential solutions.

Comments and feedback are definitely welcome... either as comments here on this site, on social media or as email to "dyork@lodestar2.com".

I'm not sure when I'll do that next iteration, but probably later this year.

Thanks in advance!

P.S. An audio commentary on this topic is available... see the embedded audio plater at the bottom of this post... (below the graphic)


Directory dilemma



FIR On Technology, Episode 4 – How To Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly

FIR On Technology logoHow do you make your website “mobile-friendly”? Given Google’s impending April 21, 2015, deadline to start using mobile-friendliness as a ranking factor for mobile search results, what can you do both in the short-term and in the longer-term to both provide the best experience for mobile users - and also retain your Google search result ranking?

In this fourth episode of “FIR On Technology” Dan York explains what you need to be thinking about with regard to “responsive design” of your website, outlines some of the resources Google offers to help, and explains several of the options you have to make your site mobile-friendly.  During the episode Dan discusses the following sites:

Get this Podcast:

The music for the intro and outro is “Early Warning” from Mark Knox and is used with his permission.

Sharing Your Comments

FIR Community on Google+Share your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also send us instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype:fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at fircomments@gmail.com. If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed. To stay informed about occasional FIR events (eg, FIR Live), sign up for FIR Update email news.

NOTE: This podcast announcement was originally posted on the For Immediate Release (FIR) website.

Google Says Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly By April 21 – Or Drop In Search Results

Mobile friendly testIs your website "mobile-friendly"? Does it display nicely on a mobile device such as an iPhone, iPad, Android or other smart phone? If not, you have until April 21 to make it mobile-friendly... or you will suffer a drop in Google search results!

In a February 26 post on Google's Webmaster Central Blog, Google very clearly indicated their direction (my emphasis added):

Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.

Google does not often clearly state what signals it uses for ranking search results... but here they are.

Get "mobile-friendly" ... or drop in search ranking for mobile searches!

This last point is important - they say the mobile-friendly status will be used as a ranking status for mobile searches. I interpret this to mean that if your site is not mobile-friendly you might still rank highly in searches from regular computers/laptops/desktops, but your ranking would decrease in searches from mobile devices.

However, given how many people are now using mobile devices to access the Internet... and how that trend continues to increase over time... NOT having a mobile-friendly site is going to impact people being able to get to your site.

UPDATE: I also recorded an audio podcast, "FIR On Technology, Episode 4 - How To Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly" about this topic. More information and links can be found on that page.

Tools To Help

To help with the transition to a mobile-friendly web, Google has provided several tools. First, they have a "Mobile-Friendly Test" tool at:

https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/

It will analyze your site and tell you if you are "mobile-friendly" in Google's view (which is presumably what they will use in the ranking signals).

Second, Google has a guide to creating mobile-friendly websites at:

https://developers.google.com/webmasters/mobile-sites/get-started/

A key section here is:

where they explain options you have to make your site mobile-friendly.

Moving To A New Theme

In some cases, such as this Disruptive Conversations site that is still hosted on TypePad, my only choice is to move to a new "theme" that uses "responsive design". I've already done this with danyork.com, but haven't yet done that here (but I will before April 21). This can be a larger process if you want to continue to use your existing style and design.

With other content management systems (CMSs) such as WordPress, Drupal and Joomla, you can also move to mobile-friendly themes as there are many available. When I've been creating new sites on WordPress in the past year or two I've made sure that all the themes I've been using have had "responsive design" as one of their attributes.

Using A Plugin

With some of the CMSs, there may be plugins that can help you make your site mobile-friendly without changing the theme. For instance, with WordPress, there are two that I've used to make sites mobile-friendly:

Both of those plugins essentially provide a responsive-design theme that gets used for your site when a mobile device connects to your site. You may not have all the design capabilities that you would have in having your main theme be responsive (in terms of having the mobile theme look like your main theme), but these plugins provide a quick way to get your site to be "mobile-friendly".

Other CMSs may have similar plugins, modules or extensions - you need to check with your CMS. Google's guide has links to help you get started.

Other Options

If you don't use a CMS or your CMS doesn't offer mobile-friendly themes or plugins... well... you may want to consider moving to a CMS that offers such capabilities (although that can be a huge task). Or you can read up on the principles of "responsive design" and see what you can apply to your website.

Getting To A Mobile-Friendly Web

The end result out of all of this will be a mobile-friendly web... and as all the millions and billions of new users come on to the Internet odds are pretty good that they will be using mobile devices, so the good news is that your content will be readily accessible on all those devices.

The bad news is that you may have some work to do between now and April 21 if you haven't already made your site mobile-friendly. (Well, assuming you care about ranking highly in Google search results - but if you are reading this site you probably do!)

If you've needed a deadline to make this happen... here it is!

Get mobile-friendly by April 21... or watch your Google search ranking drop!


An audio commentary on this topic is available:


Discuss this post:


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Google Finally Kills Off GoogleTalk and XMPP (Jabber) Integration

GoogleTalk is dead, Jim!

By way of a comment to a post I wrote back in May 2013 about Google seeming to kill off XMPP/Jabber support in Google+ Hangouts (spoiler: They did!), I learned from a friend that the GoogleTalk API was officially deprecated as of February 23, 2015. I confirmed this by finding a Google+ post from Google's Mayur Kamat.

Now, this is not a surprise. Google has been clear that Hangouts was the replacement and also that Hangouts does not support XMPP:

Googletalk end

Still, I'm sad to see the XMPP integration die off. It is just a continuation of the descent of messaging services into walled gardens ... a topic I've been writing about for many years.

UPDATE: Please see the post "No, it’s not the end of XMPP for Google Talk" on the XMPP Standards Foundation site. The XSF notes that XMPP is still used inside of Google and that XMPP federation can still occur with a third-part XMPP client. However, because Google does not support the secure use of XMPP via TLS, many public XMPP servers will not connect to its server. I join the XSF in wishing that Google would embrace secure messaging and better federation. However, given that their product direction is for Hangouts, which does NOT support XMPP, I'm skeptical that we'll ever see any better federation at this point.

On that note, it was really no surprise to see the media reports about Microsoft killing off Google and Facebook chat support in its Outlook.com service. Microsoft made this Google integration available back in May 2013, but today Microsoft really has no choice:

  • Google has killed off XMPP integration with Hangouts.
  • Facebook has killed off XMPP integration with their new v2.0 API.

And so Microsoft can only offer Outlook.com its own proprietary walled garden... Skype!

Goodbye GoogleTalk and... sadly... goodbye XMPP integration!


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Google’s IPv6 Traffic Hits 5% Globally, 28% in Belgium, 12% in USA and Germany

Google's IPv6 statistics at 5%

Outstanding news!  Today marked another milestone in the continued evolution of the Internet from the development version based on IPv4 to the production version of the Internet based on IPv6 – Google’s IPv6 traffic statistics showed that global traffic over IPv6 has passed the 5% mark!   Even better, if you go into the per-country IPv6 statistics, you can see the increased growth in IPv6 traffic in countries such as Belgium (28.45%) and the USA (11.85%), Germany (11.88%), Luxembourg (11.38%), Switzerland (9.94%) and a number of others.

As our colleague Phil Roberts writes in an Internet Technology Matters post today, these numbers compare well to what Akamai is showing in their per-country IPv6 traffic statistics.  Phil also mentioned the World IPv6 Launch measurements, which break down the measurements on a per-network basis and show even higher levels of IPv6 deployment such as the 59.4% measured on Verizon Wireless’ networks (because of their IPv6-based LTE).  I would add that APNIC’s IPv6 statistics tell a similar story (and use a different measurement technique) – if you scroll down APNIC’s page you’ll see the list of the top countries and the IPv6 connectivity in those regions.

As far as the global 5% measurement, we definitely agree with Phil:

While 5% might not seem like a large percentage, it’s a big step on the path to IPv6 becoming the prominent Internet Protocol on the Internet, and billions more people and devices being able to connect to an Internet that works like the one we’ve enjoyed and benefitted from so far. And that’s worth celebrating.

Anyone who still doubts that IPv6 will ever happen in their lifetime clearly isn’t reading the statistics!  That graph is going up and to the right… and if you look at the fact just two years ago the % was under 1%… the deployment IS happening!

What about you?  Are your networks, services and applications ready for IPv6?  If you haven’t started yet, definitely check out our Start Here page to find resources for your type of role or organization.  And please let us know if you need more information – the time to make the move is TODAY!

Awesome News About HTTPS As A Ranking Signal, Google! Now Can We Please Get IPv6 And DNSSEC, Too?

Google logoThe big news hitting the online marketing world today is that Google has indicated that the use of HTTPS in your web site will potentially help your site rank better in Google’s search results. In other words, the use of a TLS (formerly “SSL”) certificate to encrypt the connection to your website will be one of the signals Google uses to rank results.  To be precise, here is the key part of the post:

For these reasons, over the past few months we’ve been running tests taking into account whether sites use secure, encrypted connections as a signal in our search ranking algorithms. We’ve seen positive results, so we’re starting to use HTTPS as a ranking signal. For now it’s only a very lightweight signal — affecting fewer than 1% of global queries, and carrying less weight than other signals such as high-quality content — while we give webmasters time to switch to HTTPS. But over time, we may decide to strengthen it, because we’d like to encourage all website owners to switch from HTTP to HTTPS to keep everyone safe on the web.

Because you almost never get SEO advice directly from Google this was big news today.  And even though the post says that fewer than 1% of search engine queries will be helped today by enabling HTTPS, I’ve already seen a ton of associated articles from SEO consultants and others saying that you need to go enable TLS for your site today.  (Well, okay, to be honest the ones I’ve seen are all saying to go enable “SSL” but maybe some day we can get everyone to use “TLS”! On that note, kudos to Google for NOT using “SSL” in their article!)

I’m sure that many web hosting providers are similarly getting inquiries from customers today about how TLS can be enabled on their websites.

Naturally we’re pleased to see this news out of Google because the goal of our TLS for Applications area here on Deploy360 is to help people get TLS happening across their sites and services.  So to the degree that Google can help drive that deployment of TLS – and wind up getting the whole ecosystem of SEO consultants and marketing/PR people to help drive that deployment – we all win with a more secure Internet!

Of course, our thinking immediately jumps to the next step – what if Google were to say that having a site available over IPv6 would count as a ranking signal?  Several people on Twitter suggested exactly that today. Here’s one:

Can you imagine how many website owners might suddenly be asking their ISPs and hosting providers how to get IPv6?  (Tip to website owners/operators: check our our IPv6 resources targeted to you!)

Or… what if the fact that a web site’s domain was signed with DNSSEC counted as a ranking signal?

Can you imagine how many website owners might suddenly be trying to get their domains signed?  (Again, we’ve got you covered with some steps you can take.)

How about it, Google?  Please?   :-)

P.S. If you do want to get your site or network moved to IPv6 or DNSSEC, please check out our “Start Here” page to find resources focused on your type of organization or role.

 

 

Google IPv6 Stats Pass 4% Globally, 20% in Belgium, 8% in USA, 11% in Switzerland

It seems that Belgium is beating the USA in more than just World Cup Soccer (What an amazing game!)… they are also doing it in IPv6 deployment! In looking at Google’s latest IPv6 statistics, my colleague Phil Roberts noted that IPv6 deployment globally has doubled in 9 months and is now over 4%.  It’s great to see a chart that goes up and to the right like this one:

google-4percent

But while Google is measuring 4% IPv6 availability globally, I like looking at Google’s “Per-Country IPv6 adoption” page that gives a view into how diverse the IPv6 deployment really is.  Here’s the global map (click/tap the map to go to the site) as of today:

ipv6-google-global-4percent

And if you hover over the green spots you can easily see some of the various numbers:

  • 8.09% – United States
  • 4.59% – Peru
  • 5.14% – France
  • 8.69% – Germany
  • 5.67% – Romania

If you click on the “Europe” link at the bottom of the image you can zoom in a bit more and see these great stats (you could get this from the global map, too, if your hand is good enough to hover over the smaller countries):

  • 20.07% – Belgium
  • 10.68% – Switzerland
  • 7.99% – Luxembourg

VERY cool to see this high level of IPv6 availability in Belgium and indeed in all these countries!

Obviously these are just one set of measurements from Google, but there are a range of other IPv6 statistics sites, including the World IPv6 Launch measurements site, that also continue to show the increased global growth of IPv6 – great to see!

P.S. if you want to get started with IPv6, please visit our “Start Here” page to find resources targeted at your type of organization so that you can get started today!

GigaOm: Cloud Providers Need To Get IPv6!

GigaOm article about IPv6Over on GigaOm today we were delighted to see the article “With billions of devices coming online, cloud providers better get with IPv6 program“.  In that article, author Barb Darrow writes:

As we enter the internet of things era, with millions; check that, billions of devices coming online, we’re going to need a lot more unique IP addresses. That means the big cloud providers need to get on the stick to support IPv6, the internet protocol that opens up billions of new addresses for just that purpose.

EXACTLY!

This is a key point we’ve been making in our events and presentations – with all these many devices coming online, and also with 3-4 billion more people to come online, we need to move to using IPv6!

In the article, she goes on to note that IPv6 is NOT supported by Microsoft Azure, Google Computer Engine and most of Amazon Web Services.  She does point out that IBM Softlayer does support IPv6 as will a new “Verizon Cloud” service apparently coming out later this year.  (All of which has made me note that we need a page on this Deploy360 site about “cloud services that support IPv6″.)

A few weeks back I asked a friend of mine who has an Internet of Things (IoT) startup whether his new service supported IPv6.  He runs his system, not surprisingly, on a cloud platform – in his case Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) – and because EC2 doesn’t have IPv6, he can’t run his apps over IPv6.

We need to get there.  We need all the cloud providers to be enabled for IPv6, because they will then enable all the companies, large and small and everything in between, to make the move to the “production” version of the Internet.

Barb Darrow mentions in the GigaOm article that “the device population explosion pose to cloud providers and the very architecture of data centers will be a hot topic next week at Structure“, where Structure is GigaOm’s conference on the whole “cloud” topic.  That sounds great… although in looking at the agenda I don’t see anything specifically mentioning IPv6.  Hopefully that is a topic that gets covered and maybe we’ll be able to write about some of the IPv6-related news next week.

UPDATE: In a comment to this post, Barb Darrow indicates that IPv6 will be a topic in the Structure panel “What has to happen to enable the infrastructure to support IOT?”  And indeed, to support the Internet of Things (IoT) we very definitely need to move to IPv6!

Meanwhile, if you are a cloud provider – or anyone else – do check out our “Start Here” page or just browse through some of our IPv6 resources to get started with the move to IPv6!

Playing Google’s Interactive Rubik’s Cube Over IPv6

Today Google’s front page is an interactive “doodle” celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Rubik’s Cube.  Apart from feeling old since I remember when the Rubik’s Cube first came out, I was also of course thrilled to note that being on a Google website, this interactive Rubik’s Cube is available over IPv6:

Google-rubikscube

Using the IPvFoo add-on for Google Chrome I can verify that almost all of my communication is indeed going over IPv6:

Google Rubik's Cube Doodle

I am guessing from the URLs that the IPv4 connections are to some type of measurement site.  Regardless, the main communication is all happening over IPv6.

And this doodle reminded me, too, that it’s been a looooonnnnnggg time since I worked with a Rubik’s Cube! :-)

If you play with the interactive version today, I hope you have fun… and if you aren’t seeing it over IPv6, why not check out our “Start Here!” pages to see how you can join the rest of us?