Chromium/Chrome Browser Adds A glTF Parser

Written by Michael Larabel in Google on 26 March 2017 at 08:16 AM EDT. Add A Comment
Google's Chrome / Chromium web-browser has added a native glTF 1.0 parser. The GL Transmission Format, of course, being Khronos' "3D asset delivery format" for dealing with compressed scenes and assets by WebGL, OpenGL ES, and other APIs.

There are glTF utility libraries in JavaScript and other web-focused languages, but Google adding a native glTF 1.0 parser appears to be related to their VR push with supporting VR content on the web. Their glTF parser was added to Chromium Git on Friday.

Chrome's VR Team ended up posting some additional information and clarifications to Chromium's graphics-dev mailing list. They will be using the glTF format to store and delivery geometry information for adding 3D models into their VR browser, beginning with the Daydream controller.

For the time being the glTF parser isn't being exposed to third-party data and doesn't implement the full glTF 1.0 specification. Additionally, they are looking at adding glTF 2.0 support with more features and functionality, but so far there isn't good tooling support around glTF 2.0. The Google developers are putting the parser in a common Chromium location for possible re-use and/or extensions within Chrome. Currently they are soliciting feedback.

Great to see Chrome/Chromium moving forward with glTF usage and support. For those that missed it during GDC, Microsoft has committed as well to even delivering glTF support within Microsoft Office, thus hopefully this is just the beginning of growth for this graphics asset delivery format.
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