Lossy Compression of True-color PNG Images

On 11th November 2014 at Twitter as part of Instantly loading web apps and lossy PNGs

PNG is currently the only image format that works across all browsers and supports alpha channel. Backwards-compatible lossy encoding is much easier to deploy on the Web than a set of vendor-specific alternative image formats, but can still significantly reduce bandwidth and page loading times.

I’m going to present a lossy compression method for PNG images that is based on PNG filters. It’s compatible with the standard decoders and can generate files 20%-40% smaller than a usual lossless encoding.

Unlike conversion of PNG to a palette, this technique works with true-color images.

It can be applied to PNG files as they’re streamed, with relatively little computing power and memory, which makes it perfect for automatic Front-End Optimization tools and proxies.

I’m going to demonstrate tools that designers and developers can use today to recompress PNGs manually or in batches.

View session slides

Presented by

Kornel Lesiński

Image compression tinkerer (http://ImageOptim.com , http://pngquant.org ). Programmer. Information sponge.


I like standards, RFCs and deleting code.

I specialise in web development (Node.js, ES6, Postgres, HTML5 and friends), web performance optimisations, and image compression (ImageOptim, pngquant).

I also do a bit of OS X development and drool over Rust.


Instantly loading web apps and lossy PNGs


11th November 2014

Skill level