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The Khronos Group has announced the immediate release of the OpenGL ES 3.0 specification, bringing significant functionality and portability enhancements to the 3D graphics API that is used on the majority of the world’s smartphones and tablets. OpenGL ES 3.0 brings functionality from OpenGL 3.3 and 4.2 to the mobile platforms.

OpenGL ES 3.0 provides access to state-of-the-art graphics processing unit (GPU) functionality with portability across diverse mobile and embedded operating systems and platforms. Leading designers of mobile graphics processing units, including ARM Holdings, DMP, Imagination Technologies, HI, Nvidia Corp., Qualcomm and ZiiLabs plan to support then new API with their existing and future graphics technologies.

New functionality in the OpenGL ES 3.0 specification includes:

  • Multiple enhancements to the rendering pipeline to enable acceleration of advanced visual effects including: occlusion queries, transform feedback, instanced rendering and support for four or more rendering targets;
  • High quality ETC2/EAC texture compression as a standard feature, eliminating the need for a different set of textures for each platform;
  • A new version of the GLSL ES shading language with full support for integer and 32-bit floating point operations;
  • Greatly enhanced texturing functionality including guaranteed support for floating point textures, 3D textures, depth textures, vertex textures, NPOT textures, R/RG textures, immutable textures, 2D array textures, swizzles, LOD and mip level clamps, seamless cube maps and sampler objects;
  • An extensive set of required, explicitly sized texture and render-buffer formats, reducing implementation variability and making it much ea sier to write portable applications.

The OpenGL ES working group at Khronos expects to update the OpenGL ES adopter’s program to provide extensive conformance tests for OpenGL ES 3.0 within six months, enabling implementers of the specification to gain access to source code for conformance tests and to use the OpenGL ES trademark on products that pass the defined testing procedure.  This ensures that conformant OpenGL ES implementations provide a reliable, cross-platform graphics programming platform.

Tags: OpenGL, OpenGL ES, Khronos, ARM, Nvidia, Imagination Technologies, DMP, PowerVR, Tegra, Mali, Snapdragon, Qualcomm, ZiiLabs

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