Saturday, July 13, 2024

Google Unveils Jpegli, a New JPEG Coding Library for Better Image Compression

Google has announced a new JPEG coding library called Jpegli that promises to compress high quality images 35% more efficiently than traditional JPEG codecs, while maintaining full backward compatibility with existing standards.

Key features of Jpegli include:

  1. Full compliance with the original JPEG standard and API/ABI compatibility with codecs like libjpeg-turbo and MozJPEG.
  2. Improved image quality with reduced noise and compression artifacts for sharper, cleaner images.
  3. Encoding and decoding speeds comparable to existing approaches without performance degradation.
  4. Support for 10+ bit color depths to avoid banding artifacts in gradients.
  5. More compact file sizes, saving bandwidth and storage space compared to conventional JPEG.

Jpegli works by adapting quantization heuristics from the JPEG XL reference codec and performing precise intermediate color space conversions, all while operating within the traditional 8-bit JPEG formalism. This allows the compressed files to be compatible with all current browsers and imaging software, while delivering better visual quality.

Through crowdsourced testing, Google found that at the same bitrates, Jpegli provided significantly better perceptual quality ratings than libjpeg-turbo and MozJPEG. In one test, Jpegli at 2.8 bits per pixel outscored libjpeg-turbo at the higher 3.7 bits per pixel rate.

Overall, Jpegli promises faster, more bandwidth-efficient and visually superior web experiences by improving the aging JPEG standard. Wider industry adoption, however, remains to be seen as developers evaluate this new coding library from Google.