Skip to main content

Press Release

Khronos Releases Final WebGL 1.0 Specification

Royalty-free specification brings OpenGL ES 2.0 3D graphics functionality to HTML5; Adopted by Apple, Google, Mozilla and Opera with implementations shipping today; Free conformance tests available from Khronos; Call for Participation in WebCL Initiative

3rd March, 2011 – Game Developers Conference, San Francisco – The Khronos™ Group today released the final WebGL™ 1.0 specification to enable hardware-accelerated 3D graphics in HTML5 Web browsers without the need for plug-ins.  WebGL defines a JavaScript binding to OpenGL® ES 2.0 to allow rich 3D graphics within a browser on any platform supporting the industry-standard OpenGL or OpenGL ES graphics APIs.  WebGL has the support of major silicon and browser vendors including Apple, Google, Mozilla and Opera with multiple browsers already shipping with WebGL implementations including the beta releases for Mozilla Firefox 4.0, all channels of Google Chrome 9.0, an Opera preview build, and Apple Mac OS Safari nightly builds.

WebGL leverages the pervasive availability of OpenGL ES 2.0 graphics on almost all browser-capable desktop, mobile and embedded platforms and the recent developments in Web technology including the massive increases in JavaScript performance.  The ability for Web developers to directly access OpenGL-class graphics directly from JavaScript, and freely mix 3D with other HTML content, will enable a new wave of innovation in Web gaming, educational and training applications and graphically rich user interfaces to make the Web more enjoyable, productive and intuitive.

There is already a thriving middleware ecosystem around WebGL to provide a wide diversity of Web developers the ability to easily create compelling 3D content for WebGL-enabled browsers.  These tools include: C3DL, CopperLicht , EnergizeGL, GammaJS, GLGE, GTW, O3D, OSG.JS, SceneJS, SpiderGL, TDL, Three.js and X3DOM.  Links to these authoring tools and WebGL demos can be found at

In addition to the WebGL specification, Khronos has created a comprehensive WebGL test suite that can be downloaded free of charge.  Implementers of WebGL capable browsers can run the test suite and upload their passing test results in order be able to designate their implementations as conformant to the WebGL specification.  More details on WebGL conformance tests can be found at

"WebGL enables an entire new class of applications on the web.  Being able to take advantage of first-class 3D hardware acceleration in a browser on both desktop and mobile allows web developers to create compelling and immersive experiences for their users," said Vlad Vukićević of Mozilla and chair of the WebGL Working Group.

"HI CORPORATION is very excited about WebGL and believes that the combination of WebGL and HTML5 will become a very important platform," said Hirotaka Suzuki, CTO. "HI CORPORATION is deeply committed to WebGL and is planning to bring many of our technologies to the arena."

  "NVIDIA helped to form the WebGL initiative as we believe it will fundamentally change the Web experience and we are committed to provide the optimal WebGL experience across Quadro and GeForce graphics on desktops and Tegra-based superphones and tablets," said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president mobile content at NVIDIA.  "The Khronos WebGL Working Group is a uniquely productive forum that has brought together the expertise of both browser and GPU vendors.  Khronos is committed to working with the Web community to ensure WebGL is a dynamic and enabling piece of the Web HTML5 ecosystem for both desktop and mobile platforms."

"WebGL will finally free web developers from the confines of 2D without the need for a plug-in," said Tim Johansson, lead graphics developer, Opera Software. "Once WebGL becomes pervasive, we can look forward to a new era in creativity on the Web. Opera is excited to be part of the WebGL initiative. We intend to support WebGL in our browsers, whether on computers, mobile phones or TVs."

"Qualcomm is pleased to be an early adopter of open standards for mobile 3D graphics applications, including OpenGL ES and WebGL. We look forward to helping our partners lead the connected, mobile experience by integrating WebGL into our power-efficient Snapdragon wireless platforms that include Qualcomm’s embedded Adreno GPUs and Qualcomm’s enhanced, high-performance family of integrated CPUs," said Raj Talluri, vice president of product management for Qualcomm. "Integrating WebGL acceleration into our Snapdragon platforms will allow developers to deliver stunning new 3D applications through the web that perform comparably to native applications that are preinstalled on today’s Smartphones and Tablet devices."

Khronos is also today announcing the formation of the WebCL™ working group to explore defining a JavaScript binding to the Khronos OpenCL™ standard for heterogeneous parallel computing.  WebCL creates the potential to harness GPU and multi-core CPU parallel processing from a Web browser, enabling significant acceleration of applications such as image and video processing and advanced physics for WebGL games.  Any company interested to participate in the definition of WebCL is invited to send a request for more information to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

See Khronos and WebGL at GDC
  Please visit Khronos at booth #1444 at the Game Developer Conference (GDC), March 2-4, 2011 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco to learn more about WebGL.  Khronos is also running a series of developer university sessions on Thursday, March 3rd, in Room 301 in the South Hall:
WebGL at 9AM, OpenGL at 10:30AM, Demos at 12 noon, COLLADA at 1:30PM, OpenCL at 3PM, Beer and demos at 4:30PM and finally Mobile APIs at 4:50PM.  More details about Khronos activities at GDC can be found at:

About The Khronos Group
  The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, OpenKODE™ and COLLADA™. All Khronos members are able to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests.  More information is available at



Khronos, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.