The first visible result of the new WordPress core performance team, consisting mainly of employees donated to the project by Yoast and Google, is a beta plugin, called Performance Lab.
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Can Performance Lab be installed for testing?
The plugin is available in the official plugins directory, is a test for the performance improvements that are being worked on to incorporate into WordPress.
You should not install Performance Lab on your active website, as it is not a substitute for any optimization or WPO plugin, it is a simple testing ground that might be integrated into WordPress in a future update.
What does the Performance Lab plugin do?
To find out just go to Settings → Performance.
As you can see in the screenshot, there are currently 3 modules available:
- WebP Uploads – With this module active it will automatically create .webp copies of the images you upload, without the need to use a plugin.
- Object Cache – With this module you can check the status of the native WordPress object cache.
Is the Performance Lab plugin useful?
So much for the theory, but does anything work? Yes, everything works, even the experimental utility.
Regarding WebP format compatibility, it is automatic. Which will be served by default in your content.
And the informative tools on the health of the site also work well.
Now nothing, this is just a first preview of what is being worked on in the performance team, and with the different versions of this plugin we will see and test the performance and WPO improvements that WordPress will incorporate in the future without the need for plugins(hopefully).
It is not guaranteed that there will be more tools, not even that the current ones will remain, everything is subject to change, so don’t get rid of your optimizations and WPO plugin yet, ok?