In the iOS development world, PNG are given special treatment when included in an application and they are further optimized in the compiling process. For that reason, I often prefer to use PNG for images in my applications when I don’t need a high amount of detail or when the images aren’t huge.
As I always say, I like to use and stay in Lightroom as often as possible, but Lightroom doesn’t natively support exporting to PNG. That meant that I had to export my images out of Lightroom over to something like Photoshop simply to save them as a PNG. That wasn’t horrible for one or two images, but for larger batches, it got painful fast.
I knew there had to be an easier way, and I was right. There is a plug-in available that provides support for exporting PNG called Magic Export.
Update: It looks like the plug-in is no longer in the Plug-in Exchange, but I found an archived copy here: http://fnordware.blogspot.com/2012/10/magic-export-for-lightroom.html.
While many plug-ins are self-contained inside of Lightroom, the Magic Export plug-in relies on a library outside of Lightroom itself. Basically, the plug-in automates the process of exporting an image, either as a PSD or a TIFF, then leverages an open source image utility called ImageMagick, which comes with the plug-in, to turn that exported image in to a PNG.
It might not be the most elegant solution, and it comes with some limitations, but it works and it keeps me in Lightroom.
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