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April 13, 2011

Opera Turbo Uses WebP to Compress Images

Opera is probably the best browser for slow Internet connections, especially if you enable Opera Turbo, a proxy that compresses web pages. Opera 11.10 improved this feature significantly by replacing highly compressed JPEGs with WebP images.

"The most noticeable difference is probably WebP. An open standard image format that was released with some fanfare by Google last year. We thought it was about time to replace the 20 year old JPEG format with something more modern. Overall, WebP produces images with less artifacts and crisper details, even though the image takes less space," says Opera's Audun Mathias Ƙygard.

Here's an image from BBC's site in Opera 11.01 (JPEG) and Opera 11.10 (WebP):

Opera's tests showed that there's an important speed improvement: "about 22% less data transferred compared between old and new Opera Turbo". For example, BBC's science page uses 724.1 KB, instead of 1111 KB, in the old version of Opera Turbo.

There are two browsers that support WebP: Chrome and Opera 11.10, but Opera's team found a great way to use it. It's important to mention that WebP is based on WebM/VP8, a video format open sourced by Google.

{ via FavBrowser }

15 comments:

  1. This would be more useful on their mobile browsers. I wonder what they do in Opera Mobile/Mini 6.

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  2. a lot of the detail is lost in the example, it is just smoothing out detail to reduce size

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  3. hmmm...it's can be alternative way...
    cool cool \m/

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  4. Agreed. Lots of detail is lost. Just look at the wrinkles on the red cape. They disappear on the WebP version!

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  5. You're right, but WebP images look better, while also reducing file size. It's an impressive achievement.

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  6. I hope google chrome would add this on there features. I love using gChrome because it loads pages much faster than any other browser.

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  7. The WebP image does look better than the other example, but I've never been a fan of compressed images.

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  8. That's terrific and all, but who in this day and age has a slow internet connection? It's 2011, not 1997. I'd be more impressed if their innovations were in other areas.

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  9. @shle896 : netbook on 3G ?

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  10. @Kiwi-HeffeQue: WebP makes different choices about what to use precious bits for. While it's true that some detail on the dress is lost check out the eyes... jpeg is much worse there.

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  11. That's just one image, and it's in JPEG format, which suggests to me that it's been converted from one lossy format (JPEG original) to another (WebP) and then back to JPEG for display here. That would explain the decline in quality. Converting from one lossy format to another will always lead to a reduction in quality.

    TRiG.

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  12. There is really nothing much of a difference. However there is a really good side on using opera.

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  13. This browser is universal. Not all people in the world access 3G and I'm quite sure some parts of any developed country lack 3G. Opera turbo helps me a lot in saving data on my mobile or PC and, now that the image quality has improved 100 times over, I'm that much more satisfied

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  14. I've found that enabling Opera Turbo does in fact boost speed times. It is also a more secure option as requests go through Opera's Turbo servers.

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  15. webp encoding speed is about 25 slower than jpeg

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