Microsoft announces HD Photo format

Microsoft announced at the PMA 07 conference the beta release of their new image file format HD Photo. The company says that it creates smaller file sizes, while producing better output than JPEG and can offer lossless and lossy image compression while retaining full dynamic range and color gamut data from camera sensors. The real news is the availability of plugins for Photoshop on both Windows and OS X, the Windows version in beta now and the OS X version within 60 days when the released plug-ins are done. Yes, it will be universal.

It turns out (according to the HD Photo home page) that this is "the new name for Windows Media Photo" and reflects the same format. The specifications are available online, as well as the Device Porting Kit which is basically the bitstream format.