Animated PNG

In late March, support for Animated PNGs (APNGs) landed on the Mozilla trunk. The web can finally ditch GIF-format animations, as the APNG format offers a superior feature set… Most notably, full 24-bit color and alpha transparency. I was eager to try this out, but there were no editors to build such animations. What to do? Well, I built one. Here’s the first result:

[You’ll only see an animated logo if you’re running a recent trunk build.]

The editor is mostly complete, and I’ll release it as a browser extension once the patch for APNG image encoding support lands (bug 372741). Mozilla is a nifty platform for developing this kind of tool, as I get cross-platform support essentially for free.

Thanks to Grey Hodge for the layered source images.

About Justin Dolske

Mostly harmless.
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7 Responses to Animated PNG

  1. Peter Lairo says:

    Very nice! (although the spin-rate makes me dizzy).

    Why is that file 600 kibi? That seems pretty large.

  2. andrew says:


  3. Hanspeter says:

    hmm… pngcrush doesn’t like the extra frames and rips them out :(

  4. Goolic says:

    I have a nightly a little more recent than a2 and it doesn’t work … it’s too old ???

  5. Goo says:

    It works with alpha3 … it’s beautifull… I can’t remember seeing a .gif this clear, with such a good colour etc ..

    Firefox rules, do you have a date to finalize the apng spec ???? Se we can make the web better ? :)

  6. Serious Sam says:

    That is like a few years late:
    Removing a fully functional standard and replacing it with a non-standard bastard child:
    A practice usually associated with Microsoft, good job!

  7. Sam: MNG has been argued to death in the bug, so I’ll leave it at that. APNG’s goal was allow the PNG format to be a viable replacement for animated GIFs. It’s a small, simple modification to libpng — which makes it more likely to be implemented/adopted by others.

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