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Move Over JPEG?

Microsoft has positioned its own standard as a replacement.

We try not to get too deep into the weeds when it comes to standards and file formats until they’re truly ready for prime time, but Microsoft is throwing its weight behind a new imaging format to replace the venerable JPEG.

It’s called HD Photo. Microsoft claims it offers “twice the efficiency of JPEG, with fewer damaging artifacts, resulting in higher-quality images that are one-half the file size.”

Microsoft is beta testing several HD Photo plug-ins for Photoshop and claims the new standard works on Mac OS X as well as its own operating systems (naturally).

No word yet on whether camera companies will support the new format. Given the dizzying drop in flash-memory prices these days, I don’t think saving memory space is really an urgent concern, but image-quality improvements would no doubt be welcomed.