Mozilla Firefox 51 will launch with support for the Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) built-in to the web browser.
If you check browser support for various audio and video codecs, you will soon realize that support is a mess.
Not only is it different depending on the web browser that you are using, but it may also be different depending on the operating system.
Some formats, like mp3 or H.264, are supported by the majority of browsers while others, like FLAC or Ogg are not necessarily.
While you may not come across a single service or site that supports FLAC or OGG depending on what you do on the Internet, you will benefit from native integration if you do.
FLAC is for instance used by several high quality audio streaming services that offer lossless audio streams.
As far as FLAC is concerned, it is not supported by the majority of browsers. In fact, up to Firefox 51, it is not support by any browser with a noticeable market share.
Mozilla is the first to introduce FLAC support. Starting with Firefox 51, FLAC support is built natively in Firefox.
Firefox 51 is the current version of the Nightly version of the Firefox browser. If you run it, you may listen to FLAC audio in Firefox already.
Up until now you had no option but to download the FLAC file, or get delivered a fallback format like mp3 instead if the service checked for support and noticed that it is not supported by the browser.
Some music services, Tidal needs to be mentioned in this regard, offer high quality playback using FLAC but only if the browser supports it.
Firefox 51 will be released to the stable channel on January 24, 2017 according to the Mozilla Firefox Release Schedule. Please note that the schedule or the integration of FLAC support may change, for instance if issues are encountered that require more development work on the feature.
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