The PNG file format was introduced quite a while back; it was put forth in the market in the mid 90’s to cover the drawbacks of the the common GIF image format. However, it did not catch on because the early browsers were not designed to support the state of the art offerings of PNG so internet designers and developers were compelled to incorporate it sparingly. One of the primary blocks standing in the way was Microsoft Internet Explorer which was by far the most famous browsers of that period; IE had very little place for PNG support which equated to the fact that the format could only be used in the most restricted way. However, the scene went through a change when IE7 was brought out; this latest offering from Microsoft has helped in increasing the popularity of PNGs. So lets take a look at three reasons why PNG is by far the most useful image formats in the market today:
You can get see through images or alpha transparency: When you analyze the features of GIF and PNG, it will become apparent that a very distinct advantage with PNG is that you can only save a particular color transparently through the use of GIF which means that the color can be transformed regardless of it being opaque or transparent with nothing in betweenbut when you use PNG, you get a specific benefit; because the format can be used to produce semi transparency. This feature gives you the ability to save a PNG file with a soft drop shadow and then float it against any background. You can also use the image as a gradient background or water mark. The file type gives you the option to use the smooth fading of colors from completely opaque to see through, so that you can see the webpage that lies in the background
They look fantastic: Apart from the fact, that you get amazing flexibility wit PNG images; there are numerous other benefits to incorporating this format. For example, if you choose a JPG image, you lose a part of the details on the original file whenever the file is saved, so in time, you will notice a distinct downgrade in the quality of the media. Even if, this concern has now been sorted in in the file type and you can save the images without losing any information, GIF has a limited color palette of 256, which renders it quite futile if you have to save a photograph. But, with PNG, you will get the most desired features of both these formats; you will have access to an extensive color display like with JPEG images and it also supports managed color palette like GIF files. Also the storage of the image is without loss so the picture stays as it is despite innumerable times of saving the file.
PNG allows for self optimization: A major concern that web designers need to handle very often is the issue where the brightness and the contrast ratio of the screen has to be regulated to see the the display correctly; this problem occurs due to the Gamma settings of different monitors. Gamma is a technology incorporated to scatter the the light across the monitor display. However, diverse operating systems use varying Gamma settings. So, a picture that is color corrected for Windows may not look right on a Mac. Again, in this situation the innovative PNG format comes to the rescue, in PNG, you can store the files with a built in Gamma correction so whatever operating system you are working on; the Gamma settings will be realigned to display a picture with the amazing brightness and contrast.