Animated WebP graphics support no shoo-in for Chrome
Google introduced WebP in an attempt to speed up the Web, but now the company’s engineers are raising concerns that one of the graphics format’s features will actually slow it down.
WebP is designed to compress graphics more efficiently than JPEG, GIF, and PNG. Shrinking file sizes more means data arrives faster, though there can be a penalty of longer times to encode and decode image files. One of WebP’s newer features is support for animation — a package of multiple images shown in sequence to display a short movie.
Animated GIFs have rose from obscurity to become an unlikely art form, but now there’s the poissibility that WebP could take their place. That’s just what some WebP fans would like, and they’ve begun building animated WebP support for Chrome, as detailed in an announcement by Google’s Urvang Joshi of a plan to ship the feature in Chrome.
But the announcement triggered a discussion this week about whether animated WebP support is worth messing with, in particular given that in the years since animated GIF arrived on the scene, Web-based video has arrived, built into the HTML standard used to describe Web pages.
“Animated GIFs are power hogs and really contribute much to slowing down the Web,” said Chrome team member Darin Fisher in a … [Read more]
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