Imagine you’re at a restaurant, and you’re ordering food. In the old way (HTTP/1.1), you would have to wait for each dish to arrive before you can order the next one. This takes a lot of time! But with the new way (HTTP/2), you can order all your dishes at once, and the chef can start making all of them at the same time. This means you get your food faster, and everyone is happier!

Benefits of HTTP/2

HTTP/2 is a major revision of the HTTP network protocol used by the World Wide Web. Here are its main technical features:

  • Multiplexing: Allows multiple requests and responses to be sent simultaneously over a single TCP connection. This means the client can send many requests without waiting for responses to come back one by one.

  • Header Compression: Uses a technique called HPACK to compress headers. HTTP/1.1 sends headers with each request, which can be repetitive and large. Compression reduces the size of these headers, making data transfer more efficient.

  • Server Push: Enables the server to send resources to the client before the client even asks for them. For example, if a client requests an HTML page, the server might also send CSS and JavaScript files it knows will be needed.

  • Binary Framing: HTTP/2 uses binary code to send data, which is more efficient and less prone to errors than the textual format used in HTTP/1.1.

  • Stream Prioritization: Clients can assign priority levels to streams (requests), allowing more important resources to be loaded first.

HTTP/2 was standardized in May 2015 with the release of RFC 7540. So, it’s been around for nearly a decade and has been widely adopted due to its performance benefits.

Example from a Big Company: Google

Google: Google has been using HTTP/2 for a long time across its services to enhance web performance. Chrome, Google’s web browser, was one of the first to support HTTP/2. This helps Google services like Search, Gmail, and YouTube load faster.

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HTTP/2 has revolutionized the way web content is delivered, making the internet faster and more efficient for everyone.