HTML5 Definition Complete, W3C Moves to Interoperability Testing and Performance

Author(s) and publish date


First Draft of HTML 5.1 Offers Glimpse at Next Round of Standardization


Read below what W3C Members have to say about HTML5


17 December 2012 — The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) published today the complete definition of the HTML5 and Canvas 2D specifications. Though not yet W3C standards, these specifications are now feature complete, meaning businesses and developers have a stable target for implementation and planning. HTML5 is the cornerstone of the Open Web Platform, a full programming environment for cross-platform applications with access to device capabilities; video and animations; graphics; style, typography, and other tools for digital publishing; extensive network capabilities; and more.




"The broader the reach of Web technology, the more our stakeholders demand a stable standard," said W3C CEO Jeff Jaffe. "As of today, businesses know what they can rely on for HTML5 in the coming years, and what their customers will demand. Likewise, developers will know what skills to cultivate to reach smart phones, cars, televisions, ebooks, digital signs, and devices not yet known."

W3C also announced today the first draft of HTML 5.1 and Canvas 2D, Level 2, an early view of the next round of standardization. The W3C community continues to enhance existing HTML features and develop new ones, including extensions to complement built-in HTML5 accessibility, responsive images, and adaptive streaming.

From Leading-Edge Implementations to Broad HTML5 Interoperability in 2014

Recent advances in technology and a vibrant browser market have been the source of significant innovation, much of which is now part of HTML5 and related technologies. In a recent Kendo UI survey of more than 4000 developers, 63 percent indicate that they are "actively developing with HTML5." However, the same survey shows that "browser fragmentation" remains an important developer concern, as it increases the cost and complexity of using a technology.

To reduce browser fragmentation and extend implementations to the full range of tools that consume and produce HTML, W3C now embarks on the stage of W3C standardization devoted to interoperability and testing (called "Candidate Recommendation").

During this stage, the W3C HTML Working Group will conduct a variety of activities to ensure that the specifications may be implemented compatibly across browsers, authoring tools, email clients, servers, content management systems, and other Web tools. The group will analyze current HTML5 implementations, establish priorities for test development, and work with the community to develop those tests. The HTML Working Group has planned for this implementation phase to last into mid-2014, after which W3C expects to publish the final HTML5 Recommendation, available Royalty-Free to implementers under the W3C Patent Policy.

The HTML Working Group is not alone in its pursuit of success for HTML5 and the broader Open Web Platform. For example, the Web Performance Working Group —which today published two W3C Recommendations giving access to performance metrics— is developing techniques to measure and enhance Web application performance; they recently announced findings from a November Workshop. The Web and TV Interest Group and the Core Mobile Web Community Group have prioritized testing as a way to promote deployment to a growing set of devices.


Many people in the W3C Membership, staff, and the wider community of reviewers have contributed to the specifications published today.

W3C recognizes the work of Ian Hickson (Google), who has been the editor of the HTML5 specification for nearly all of its history.

W3C appreciates the ongoing leadership of the HTML Working Group co-Chairs Paul Cotton (Microsoft), Sam Ruby (IBM), and Maciej Stachowiak (Apple). W3C also thanks the current editors who will help shepherd the specifications to W3C Recommendation.

W3C thanks all the organizations and individuals participating in the HTML Working Group for the significant time and energy they have invested, and for their ongoing commitment.

About the World Wide Web Consortium

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is an international consortium where Member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop Web standards. W3C primarily pursues its mission through the creation of Web standards and guidelines designed to ensure long-term growth for the Web. The Open Web Platform is a current major focus. Over 375 organizations are Members of the Consortium. W3C is jointly run by the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (MIT CSAIL) in the USA, the European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics (ERCIM) headquartered in France and Keio University in Japan, and has additional Offices worldwide. For more information see

Media Contacts

Ian Jacobs, <>, +1.718.260.9447

Testimonials from W3C Members


ACCESS is pleased to see this HTML5 Candidate Recommendation. We think HTML5 is useful as a single approach to connect servers and all client devices.

These are not only for Cloud, PC and Smart Phone but also for Embedded Devices without any plugins. We implemented HTML5 technologies to various embedded devices, and started a lot of services by it. Furthermore, there will be many enhanced technologies defined in WGs, these will be equipped on them, too, to realize leading-edge services. ACCESS commits to continue to support W3C activities and to contribute to the industry by Web Technologies.

Kunihiro Ishiguro, Chief Technology Officer, ACCESS CO., LTD.

Accessibility Foundation

Accessibility Foundation is excited about the complete definition of HTML5 and Canvas 2D specifications. This stable format of HTML5 offers great possibilities for improving accessibility of web and mobile web applications, digital signs, ebooks and devices not yet known for people with disabilities. We are very enthusiastic about the HTML5 possibilities for improving web accessibility of video. We applaud the great work done sofar by the experts involved in this work and trust that accessibility for people with disabilities will remain a cornerstone of the work to be done in the near future.

Eric Velleman, Advisory Committee Representative, Accessibility Foundation (Netherlands)


The completion of the HTML5 and Canvas specifications is an important milestone for developers and designers as it provides a common foundation for browsers and other implementations. Web standards are central to Adobe's Edge Tools & Services for authoring rich interactive web media and animations, helping us deliver a more predictable and reliable user experience for anyone creating content and applications for the modern web. We congratulate the working group for their efforts in advancing both specifications.

Danny Winokur, Vice President and General Manager, Adobe Interactive Development

Ayuntamiento de Zaragoza

Zaragoza's city council is fully committed to reaching all citizens. For that reason, one of its lines of work consists on offering its services independently of the platform used by the citizen. We have recently started using HTML5, which allows to develop services independent from the device while exploiting its characteristics. Besides, eliminating the need to elaborate ad-hoc applications for each platform results in higher efficiency and cost savings.

María Jesús Fernández Ruiz, Responsible management council of Zaragoza municipal website


With HTML 5.0, developers can now easily create multimedia web sites and manipulate contents like video, audio and images without plugins. This standard will improve the user experience and will simplify the developer's work.

Emmanuel Venisse, CTO, Bistri


As an agency for integrated communication, Cocomore is keen on innovative standardized technology. The broad interoperability of HTML5 facilitates our web developments especially for mobile apps. We are proud to contribute our expertise to W3C. We are proud of being part of this international leading-edge web community.

Dr. Hans-Ulrich von Freyberg, CEO, Cocomore AG


DFKI congratulates W3C to the stabilization of HTML5. HTML5 is the major, now solid building block for creating the open web platform of the future, to be used by everybody, on all devices and within all mobile platforms. It will transform all parts of our live. Using HTML5 as a basis, DFKI is excited to contribute to emerging areas like Web and automotive, the Web of things and services, 3D internet and the multilingual Web. HTML5 will transform daily life in cities and bring industry to the next stage industry 4.0. We are also looking forward to the next steps for the open web platform, addressing crucial areas like security, mobile payment and personalization.

Reinhard Karger, Corporate Spokesperson, DFKI

Ebay / PayPal

With the advent of HTML 5, Web developers are now free to create Web pages and applications that truly delight users. PayPal’s experience using HTML 5 on our sites has allowed us to provide a stronger experience for our customers with more flexibility than ever before." said Daniel Austin, Principal Architect at PayPal, a long-time member of the HTML working group and one of the authors of the previous HTML specification. "We welcome this next step in the evolution of HTML and look forward to participating in making the Web smarter, safer, and faster for everyone.

Dr. Daniel Austin, Principal Architect, PayPal, Inc.


HTML5 plays a fundamental role in making Facebook accessible to the more than one billion people who use our products. Building with the latest web technologies is how we are able to make our experience available across more than 7,000 devices. Today's announcement is an important milestone for the Open Web Platform. Facebook is proud to contribute to this effort through involvement in initiatives like the Coremob Community Group.

Tobie Langel, W3C Advisory Committee Representative, Facebook


HTML5 is now a important part of the Web. But more than that it is also a important part of Digital Publishing in ePub 3.0. We are looking forward to see the impact of the HTML5 and its ecosystem on all devices!

Mohamed ZERGAOUI, CTO, Innovimax

HTML5 est désormais une part capitale du Web. Mais c'est aussi une part primordiale du Livre Numérique dans ePub 3.0. Nous sommes impatients de voir l'impact de HTML5 et de son écosystème sur les tous les supports !

Mohamed ZERGAOUI, Responsable Stratégie Numérique, Innovimax


This release is a milestone for the evolution of HTML5. The work done by W3C helps avoid fragmentation while stimulating innovation and creating new opportunities for developers. This can lead to exciting new experiences for consumers across a range of mobile devices. As a contributing member to W3C Working Groups, steward of, and leading participant in open source development, Intel enthusiastically supports the publication of the complete definition of the HTML5 and Canvas 2D specifications and we look forward to our continued contributions.

Imad Sousou, director, Open Source Technology Center, Intel Corporation


As global leader association of Web professional we are really excited about the HTML5 Candidate Rec because this will help our members to have a most stable guideline for the development of innovative and responsive web sites and web applications. We was recently involved in HTML5 tour and we found that there is a lot of interest in a stable version of this specification, expecially for members that develop web sites for private and public companies. We will support the specification, with also education and outreach for members, and we hope that will be easly implemented by user agent vendors with full accessibility support for people with disabilities.

Roberto Scano, W3C Advisory Committee Representative, International Webmasters Association (IWA/HWG)


HTML5 unleashes the power of the Web on all sorts of devices and connected objects. Joshfire uses HTML5 and related Web standards throughout its application Factory to create innovative cross-device user experiences. As such, Joshfire is proud to support W3C and welcomes the publication of HTML5 as a Candidate Recommendation.

Michel Levy-Provençal, CEO, Joshfire


With the spread of smartphones, we consider HTML5 as the most promising application platform standards for realization of OS-independent services. However, the unique advantage of HTML5, which the other application platforms including OSs do not have, is cooperation and dispersability. This will become the driving force of the evolution of the future information system by promoting utilization of diverse services and devices. KDDI also offers a variety of smartphones to consumers. Through these terminals, we have already taken on a role to provide an HTML5 platform to the public.


Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

HTML was born of the scientific community, and its importance to worldwide communication both within that community and to its myriad stakeholders is tremendous. As HTML5 and the Open Web Platform mature, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory sees new opportunities for facilitating open scientific collaboration, communicating discoveries, expanding the use of scientific computing, and bringing our tradition of teamwork to bear on the problems that challenge our world.

Annette Greiner, W3C Advisory Committee Representative, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory


Just a week ago, Layar announced support for HTML widgets in Augmented Reality. At Layar, we rely on W3C standards to ensure that the content produced for Layar only has to be produced once and will work across all platforms. The HTML5 standard allows developers to not just create fantastic new experiences for desktop or mobile browsers, but now also to create immersive, interactive experiences in augmented reality. We're thrilled and wish to congratulate W3C on reaching this milestone!

Dirk Groten, CTO, Layar


Microsoft is proud to have participated in the hard work that has made HTML5 and Canvas 2D Candidate Recommendations, and congratulates W3C on reaching this important milestone. We look forward to working with the Web community to finalize these as W3C Recommendations. Several Microsoft products have implemented these emerging open Web standards to bring interoperability and maximum reach across multiple devices. We're confident that HTML5 and Canvas 2D are ready for wide adoption, and glad that the industry shares our enthusiasm for HTML5.1 that will soon support better graphics and streaming media in an open way.

Jean Paoli, President, Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

MoboTap / Dolphin

Dolphin is proud to be part of the Coremob Working Group and contribute to the future of web standards. The completion of HTML5 Open Web Standards is essential and a big milestone for a much stronger future of mobile web. We are committed to continue our support and excited to make the mobile web more open for both developers and users.

Yongzhi Yang, CEO, MoboTap (maker of Dolphin Browser)

Newphoria Corporation

HTML5 will increasingly become crucial for IT industry. This advance (becoming CR) will accelerate expansion of use of web technologies in various industries. We are engaged in web-based signage. We hope that HTML5 will be used much more widely in signage industry.

Futomi Hatano, CTO, Newphoria Corporation

NTT Communications

It is great news that HTML5 has reached CR status. It means almost all modern browsers will support HTML5 features themselves. This will not only drive the movement of developing Web services based on HTML5, but also lots of tools for HTML5 based site will also be deployed in the market. Of course, this is the not the last step toward the goal of building an Open Web Platform, but this is an important step.

Kensaku Komatsu, Research Engineer, NTT Communications

Opera Software

In 2003, when Opera started the spec that's now called HTML5, we dreamed that the Web would be the ubiquitous platform instead of the fragmented place it was then. Thanks to close co-operation with many others - some of whom are competitors - W3C is cementing the role of free, interoperable open standards at the heart of the world's communications network. Vive le Web.

Lars Erik Bolstad, VP Core Technology, Opera Software


HTML5 represents to our customers the next stable cross-platform technology for interactive applications which we will support in our applications. Profium would like to thank those in and outside of W3C who have contributed to the effort so far and paved the way for the future Web.

Janne Saarela, CEO, Profium


The goal Rakuten has always pursued is to empower people using our service, all over the world. Thanks to HTML5, we can achieve this goal by creating device agnostic desktop and mobile web experiences that are more intuitive and user friendly. From a development perspective, HTML5 also provides a great opportunity to lower the costs, and speed up time-to-market. We can concentrate on people, what they want to do, and not on the device they are using. HTML5 makes it possible.

Ishikawa Tomoya, Executive Officer, Rakuten Inc.

Research in Motion (RIM)

The BlackBerry platform continues to be a leader in support of web standards and implementation of those standards. With a browser built in HTML5 and one of the most robust HTML5 tool kits for developers in the mobile space, web technologies are clearly fundamental to BlackBerry 10. RIM is very pleased to see HTML5 advance to Candidate Recommendation (CR) status at W3C, an important milestone for the entire HTML5 eco-system. Congratulations W3C and to all those involved in reaching this very important milestone.

George Staikos, Vice President - Web Technologies, Research In Motion (RIM)


Sencha have been helping its community of two million developers take advantage of HTML5 features as they emerge in modern browsers via our tools and frameworks. We're extremely pleased to see HTML5 standardization proceed at such a rapid pace. For developers that want a standards-based long-lived platform, we believe that you simply can't do better than rely on the web for your platform.

Michael Mullany, CEO, Sencha


Thanks to W3C HTML Working Group members, public contributors, and the W3C team for the effort necessary to move HTML5.0 and Canvas 2D into Candidate Recommendations. For the past few years, HTML5 has been central in the development of Tomo-Digi solutions for next-generation TV in Asian countries. The new candidate recommendations will accelerate the deployment of HTML5 in broadcasting and among TV devices and revolutionize the media market with the power of the Open Web Platform.

Yosuke Funahashi, Board Director, Tomo-Digi Corporation


At Touch5Mobile (T5M) innovation drives our passion and the nexus of our passion is HTML5. T5M is 100% committed to HTML5 innovation and has been since its inception. Our team is fully committed to contributing best practices and new findings that will help shape HTML5 standardization. With the advances in HTML5 we are able to develop familiar app-like experiences cross-platform hybrid apps for retailers and their customers more cost effectively than native apps.

Scotty Moore, Founder Touch5Mobile


At Zynga, we couldn't be more excited about the bright future of HTML5 and its media-related connected specifications such as Canvas, Web Audio and responsive images. HTML5 promises the potential to bring instantly enjoyable fun experiences to more people than ever before. Today marks an important milestone in making HTML5 a general-purpose technology, including games. Games have almost aways been a deciding factor for the success of a platform, and we look forward to continue to work with the W3C on making the open web a better place for games.

Paul Bakaus, W3C Advisory Committee Representative, Zynga

Related RSS feed