Webp : The New Image Format by Google

W

webp image format logoWebp pronounced “weppy” is an ambitious new image format developed by Google . Its been 2 years since the format was announced in September 2010 and Google aims to make the Webp format as a new open standard for lossy and lossily compressed true-color graphics on the web . The webp image format is not much popular right now . My encounter with the webp format happened when i was trying to save a few app screenshots from the Google play store . I was surprised to see the new image format . With Curiosity i tried to find out about the Webp image format and here is what i could find out . lets start with what Google describes webp as .

What is webp ?

WebP is a new image format that provides lossless and lossy compression for images on the web. WebP lossless images are 26% smaller in size compared to PNGs. WebP lossy images are 25-34% smaller in size compared to JPEG images at equivalent SSIM index. WebP supports lossless transparency (also known as alpha channel) with just 22% additional bytes. Transparency is also supported with lossy compression and typically provides 3x smaller file sizes compared to PNG when lossy compression is acceptable for the red/green/blue color channels.

The above quote from Google provides a lot of information about the Webp image format .

Until now the adoption rate of webp has been very slow . Most people are not even aware of webp’s existence . but its very important that you know about this promising new image format .

Currently the webp image format is being supported by a very few browsers which includes the Google Chrome, the Google Chrome Frame plug-in for Internet Explorer, Opera 11.10, Android Ice Cream Sandwich and a lot of other softwares. Recently Facebook tried to switch over to the Webp image format for all the image content on its site  . Surprisingly it was not a good move , as it did cause a lot of upset among the Facebook users . users who tried to download images from Facebook were left puzzled . The cause being webp is not supported by most operating systems like windows , Mac  and image editing apps including the very popular Adobe Photoshop . overall it was a good thing , as criticism will help to improve a new image format like webp .

While webp is not seeing a steady increase in its adoption rate , it has many advantages over older image formats . Which being one of the main reasons why Google is trying to make webp a standard image format across all platforms . Once webp become a standard image format we can experience faster website loading speeds and the best part is , The data transfer will decrease too . Thus the internet can be accessed faster through slow connections .

chart
Average webp image size being compared by torbit

Benefits of the Webp image format :

  • Webp images are 26% smaller in comparison to PNG’s .

  • Smaller images sizes in comparison to most other image formats .

  • Can lead to decrease in website loading speeds significantly .

  • Its is an free to use image format and can be used and modified by anyone .

  • Last but not the least Its being Developed by Google .

Webp does have a few demerits right now , but these are nothing big to worry about . The project is still under development and we can see a lot of improvements in the near future .

The Webp image format has seen a lot of improvement since its initial launch in 2013 . It has gone through numerous algorithm tune-ups , which brings us the latest version of a storage efficient image format . Using the webp image standard , Google was able to reduce the image size in Chrome store by 30% , which shows how much storage efficient the webp image format is .

 Go ahead and visit the source website to find out more about the web image format and an conversion utility to convert jpg and png file to the webp format . If you want to find out how the webp image format compares with the older image format . visit this page and find out .

You can download the webp image codec for your windows computer from here .

Source: Webp

About the author

Lovejeet

Lovejeet is a Proud Geek and tech. enthusiast, who is ardent to learn more about the technology that surrounds us. He loves to tinker around with his gadgets and when he find something new and exciting, he shares it with you on this blog. Last but not the least he is a true gamer by heart. Connect with him on and Twitter

Add comment

By Lovejeet