Google Introducing WebP Format For Still Images On The Web

October 1st, 2010 at 10:29 am

It somehow is quite an advantage being a industry giant. People are more inclined to listen when an established industry giant talks. It may even take an industry giant nowadays in order to forge innovative paths that the rest of the world will someday follow. That is maybe the reason why Google is into many things innovative that may someday change the way certain industries do things.

One of the changes that Google aims to make is by trying to change an age old format into something that will work better with today’s technology. The format mentioned concerns the use of JPEG as photos and images in Web pages. Google, being the giant that it is, will try to introduce the new WebP image format for faster loading of Web pages.

According to Google’s Chromium Blog, relying on the current JPEG image format may be one of the factors for Web pages loading quite slowly. The blog stated that images and photos make up 65 percent of the bytes transmitted per Web page today. A low loading Web page can considerably affect an online visitor’s Web experience. That is why Google is currently calling for a change to a better WebP format that it is introducing.

The new WebP format, according to Google, has a better image compression features that can result in an average of 39 percent reduction of file size compared to a similar file under a JPEG format. This can result in faster loading, image-rich Web pages. The WebP format may be smaller in file size but provides the same image quality to what a JPEG format provides. By looking at it, it would truly be very beneficial to online users in general. But the problem is, would it be embraced readily for the advantages it provides?

It is not the first time that a call for changing the current JPEG format into something more updated was undertaken. Microsoft has tried doing it with the JPEG XR format in 2009. But the Web has been quite slow in trying to embrace it. One of the key reasons may be that JPEG still remains the more popular standard that even digital cameras and other similar devices use it by default. With this in mind, changing to a new image format may not be quite as easy after all. But where others may have fallen short, Google may try to take the challenge to succeed. How it will turn out is something worth looking out for.


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