What are web safe colors?

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Screen shot 2014-08-22 at 12.37.59 PMWeb safe colors display solid, non-dithered and consistent color on any computer monitor or web browser capable of displaying 8-bit color or 256 colors. The palette contains 216 rather than the 256 colors because only 216 will display the same on all computers.
The concept of web safe colors is a bit antiquated with today’s technology. However, in the early days of the web, computers were only capable of displaying 256 colors at a time. These color limitations resulted in the need for web designers to use web safe colors in order to ensure that colors displayed consistently across various computers monitors and web browsers.

Today, computers are capable of displaying millions of colors. You don’t really need to worry about using web safe colors anymore. If you are concerned, you can always ask your web designer to test it for 256-limited web safe colors and its lowest resolution and see how it looks.

However, keep in mind that most users aren’t going to be affected. While there may be some users who are still using outdated computers that are only capable of displaying 256 colors, most are not. The majority of your users will be using modern computers and high speed Internet connections. As a result, they will be able to load pages with millions of colors that will be displayed brilliantly on their screens.

There’s certainly no harm in restricting your website to web safe colors, but in a world of millions of colors, why limit yourself? Modern website users expect to view high quality images that are rich in color.

If your website is stuck in the past, it may be time to consider upgrading it. You can go for a complete redesign or gradually add page elements that are rich in color. There’s an entire rainbow of gorgeous colors out there to choose from, why not brighten up your website?

Do you still use web safe colors in your web design?

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