Here’s another little gem for you HTML5 fans out there – link prefetching. Adding the following HTML meta or link tags will result in the target being loaded in the background after your current page.
<link rel="prefetch" href="/images/big.jpeg"> or <link rel="next" href="2.html"> or <meta http-equiv="Link" content="/images/big.jpeg" rel=prefetch">
Both prefetch and next are accepted in the rel attribute.
Here are a few advantages of using this method:
- It’s HTML compliant
- It’ll dramatically speed up the resulting page/file if successfully prefetched
- It doesn’t slow current page load
- No same-origin restriction – any domain is accepted
There are also several limitations that should be noted:
- Firefox only (for now)
- Only HTTP protocol is accepted
- No URLs with querystrings accepted
To learn more about link prefetching check out the Link Prefetching FAQ at Mozilla Developer Center