There is a new image format called BPG (Better Portable Graphics) designed by the French programmer Fabrice Bellard and it promises to deliver better visual quality at half the file size of JPEG! Can BPG unseat the aging but popular JPEG format?
JPEG has been around for over 20 years and has become THE accepted means of displaying images on the web. As our web experience grows ever more visual, and as mobile browsing becomes the preferred method for many folks, JPEG begins to show its limitations. Along comes Fabrice Bellard, the creator of FFMPEG and QEMU, to show us that there might be a better way!
BPG is a format based off the H.265 video codec by utilizing the open source x265. This means BPG offers the ability to render 14 bits per color channel as opposed to 8 with JPEG. This is great news for us photographers as we can take full advantage of our displays and cameras dynamic range. It also offers an alpha channel, and a lossless compression option.
To give BPG a test run and see how it compares to JPEG you can go HERE and go through a variety of Before/After images.
Naturally the problem is that BPG has absolutely no native support at the moment. Perhaps this will change in the near future. With all the benefits, especially regarding size, it is hard to imagine that this would not one day become the new standard.