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JPEG XL is a new image compression format that promises improved compression efficiency, reduced file sizes while maintaining or improving visual quality, and support for lossless compression. Chrome and Firefox have recently rejected support for JPEG XL despite its advantages.

Definition of JPEG XL

JPEG XL is a new image compression format aiming to improve the popular JPEG format. Developers created JPEG XL to address the limitations of existing image compression formats such as JPEG and JPEG 2000. JPEG XL aims to provide a more efficient and modern image compression format for various applications, including modern imaging devices and applications, online image sharing and storage, and digital photography and printing. Also, to improve visual quality and support for lossless compression.

Comparison with existing image compression formats (JPEG, JPEG 2000)

JPEG XL significantly differs from existing image compression formats, including JPEG and JPEG 2000. Compared to JPEG, JPEG XL offers improved compression efficiency, reduced file sizes while maintaining or improving visual quality, and support for lossless compression. Furthermore, compared to JPEG 2000, JPEG XL offers a simpler and more efficient compression algorithm and improved compression efficiency and support for lossless compression.

Reduced file size while maintaining or improving visual quality

Another advantage of JPEG XL is its ability to reduce file size while maintaining or improving visual quality, achieved through advanced compression techniques that allow for the efficient compression of image data.

Support for lossless compression

JPEG XL also supports lossless compression, which means that the image data is preserved without any loss of quality. This is a significant advantage over existing image compression formats, which often result in some loss of quality during the compression process.

Online image sharing and storage

JPEG XL is also ideal for use in online image-sharing and storage applications. Its reduced file sizes and improved compression efficiency make it a perfect format for applications requiring efficient storage and sharing of images.

Digital photography and printing

JPEG XL is also well-suited for use in digital photography and printing applications. Its support for lossless compression makes it an ideal format for applications requiring preserving image quality during the compression and printing processes.

Google Refuses Support Despite Advantages

A Dilemma for JPEG XL in Chromium. JPEG XL has been a hot topic of discussion in the technology world, with the future of this format in Chromium (and thus in Chrome) being announced in a bug tracking issue. Despite its numerous benefits, Google announced its decision to remove support for JPEG XL and provided three reasons for this seemingly irrational decision.

Google claims there is not enough interest to continue experimenting with JPEG XL, and it does not bring enough incremental benefits, so it decided to remove support for it. The company claims that there needs to be more interest to continue experimenting with the format and that it does not bring enough incremental benefits.

Lack of Interest and Insufficient Incremental Benefits:

Google’s second reason is that there needs to be more interest in JPEG XL, and it needs to bring more incremental benefits. This decision has sparked criticism, with many asking how Google could measure interest in a feature that has yet to be used.

Maintenance Reduction and Focus on Existing Formats:

Google’s third reason for removing support for JPEG XL is that it will reduce maintenance effort and allow the company to focus on improving existing formats in Chrome. This decision has also been criticized, with some calling it dishonest or incompetent.

Opposition from Major Companies:

People believe that Google decided not to support JPEG XL in Chromium and Chrome due to their preference for WebP and AVIF and the desire to promote these video formats over-dependent image formats. Many major companies have spoken out against Google’s decision, including Facebook, Adobe, Intel, VESA, Krita, The Guardian, libvips, Cloudinary, and Shopify. The users, who would like to see a good, modern, high-resolution, HDR-display-friendly, and free image format used on websites, will be the ones who suffer the consequences.

Firefox’s Removal of Support:

The removal of support for JPEG XL by Firefox is insignificant as the browser no longer has the reach to drive the adoption of a format. Ultimately, this decision means that Mozilla does not want to be the only browser that supports the format directly. If JPEG XL is unlikely to become widely adopted outside browsers, Firefox would have a unique selling point. However, this is something other than what Mozilla desires.

Google’s decision to not support JPEG XL in Chromium (and Chrome) has disappointed and faced criticism. Major companies like Facebook, Adobe, and Intel have challenged Google’s decision to prioritize WebP and AVIF over JPEG XL, and the real reason behind this choice is unclear. Despite being part of the development of JPEG XL through Google Research Zurich, the company has cited three reasons for removing support, including a lack of interest and incremental benefits, as well as reducing maintenance efforts. The move will likely impact users looking forward to using a modern, high-resolution, and license-free image format on websites. The decision by Mozilla not to support JPEG XL in Firefox is also a contributing factor. However, it is unlikely to impact the widespread adoption of the format significantly.

JPEG XL is a newer image format that aims to improve upon JPEG by offering better compression and image quality while still maintaining compatibility with existing JPEG implementations. However, it is still in the early stages of development and adoption, and it may take some time before it becomes widely supported across devices and software. Nevertheless, its potential to offer improved compression and image quality could make it an appealing alternative for those who need to store and transmit large numbers of images.

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