PNG File Format

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PNG format as a free alternative

Today PNG (Portable Network Graphics) is one of the most popular bitmap formats in web graphics. The format was designed to replace the GIF, which had shortcomings and restrictions for use in free software. The developers have successfully implemented support for an 8-bit alpha channel and color depth up to 48 bits. In contrast, the predecessor can only have full transparency and a limited color palette.

Technical features

The format is very popular among web designers. The primary advantages are:

multi-level transparency;

ability to work with the layers;

lossless compression with the Deflate algorithm;

up to 16.7 million colors;

option to add meta-data to the file.

It also supports interlaced scanning with a smooth image display. PNG stores information about the image spectrum with the possibility of correction. Its functionality doesn’t depend on the device’s display. The tool also contains error correction mechanisms, which guarantees its integrity. You can open these files in any browser and almost any picture editing application. Double-click the icon to open the picture in Windows.

File extension
Internet media type
Lossless bitmap image format
Programs that use this format
FastStone Image Viewer
Google Drive
Eye of GNOME
Microsoft Paint
Adobe Photoshop
PNG Development Group