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Web Safe vs. Pantone

In the early days of the internet, around 1995, monitors were only capable of displaying a maximum of 256 colors, due to limitations on video card memory. Of the 256 colors possible, only 216 colors would display solid, without dithering, on either Macintosh or Windows computer monitors, which typically were capable of 8-bit color. The two images below show what dithering looks like.

In order to make sure that all colors reproduced properly, without dithering, a web safe palette was developed by Netscape, to allow colors to reproduce accurately using both Macintosh and Windows palettes. This was the original 'web safe color palette.'

Fast forward to 2006. Most computers sold contain video cards with at least 32-bit color, and are capable of displaying 16.7 million colors. Yet, most designers are still using only web safe colors. There is an alternative. UsingPantone software, you have access to over 1,000 solid Pantone colors. This software is a plug in, which works with most web design software Once installed, you can use your color chooser to easily incorporate any Pantone solid colors on your website. So, expand your color palette...Color up!


Screenshot of Pantone Colorist software

color picker