Jetpack has a long history in the WordPress ecosystem. There has always been those he feel it’s too much, too bloated and slows down your site. Personally, I have never experienced this myself having used it on my sites for many years.
But lately they are addressing what so many developers have been concerned about to make it fit specific needs even better. In a recent podcast with Steve Seear from Jetpack, he spoke to this misconception.
Addressing the Concept of a Bloated Jetpack
At conferences and chatting with users and customers, those representing Jetpack admit that the bloated thing comes up. They’ve addressed the concerns in various ways. And of course, you can turn everything off and so on so you’re only using the piece you need. But they have found over time, even for themselves as engineers or product developers, it’s too much. And it’s been too much to think about in one go.
Jetpack is such a big thing. It does so many things. It’s hard for them to set priorities. It’s hard to split things up. It’s also hard to set goals for the team at Jetpack when things are so large like that. They admit, that even for themselves, they had to grapple with this. But they also shared that it’s fair to say things are changing.
Everyone Really Wants to Solve Specific Problems
Customers want to solve specific problems. Partners , such as hosting partners of Jetpack, would much rather think about specific problems to solve. Designers and engineers like to think in terms of specific problems and teams as well, like to work on single things. As a result Jetpack has been trying to split things up recently.
Splitting Things Up
Jetpack Boosts, which is a plugin they launched a while back, improves the performance of a site by doing some things with critical CSS. This means that it splits up CSS and serves the critical parts at first. That’s completely standalone.
Jetpack backup is now a standalone plugin as well. If someone want backups, they can use a full Jetpack plugin. But if you want just want backups, you can use the standalone Jetpack backup plugin. They added that it’s been an interesting engineering journey. It’s forced them to split up all the different parts of Jetpack into different libraries.
They are also going through the same with the front-end parts of it as well. Everything needs to be split up. Also, the Jetpack team is starting to see the benefits. And now WooCommerce will see the benefits as well. Then there is the piece of Jetpack that powers the connection to automatic service for some WooCommerce extensions and the WooCommerce apps.. That connection part can also be split into a smaller library. They predict we’ll start to see anything Woo related that uses Jetpack take that smallest possible part and you will just be able to use that. The Jetpack plugin probably won’t be a prerequisite for these things sometime soon.
The Future of the Larger Jetpack Plugin
For the near future will always be the full plugin. The reason behind that is because as soon as you get to the point of needing one or two parts of Jetpack, you might as well just have one plugin that does it all. On the same note you’ll certainly be able to build up just the parts you need in individual plugins with a good user flow for doing that. As soon as you have one part of Jetpack, it’d be very easy to add little bits in and there’ll be a coherent hole. So, for most users, whether they’re using some parts or the whole plugin, it probably won’t make much difference to them as long as they have the bits that they need.