If Microsoft has its way (and when don’t they?), their own WMP image compression format will eventually replace JPEG. MS claims to be able to cut file size in half at the same quality levels, and to sit up and do tricks like rotating an image without decoding/encoding. And yes, the format will be available to non-Windows platforms and devices, though there will be a licensing hook (that’s the part that gives me the willies).
What I’ve never understood is why the the open source world missed the boat with PNG, which is free of licensing restrictions and also does neat tricks, but lacks lossy compression and is therefore totally unsuitable for photographic work on the web (and also lacks the ability to store EXIF data). Yes, PNG was designed primarily as an alternative to GIF, but since they had the opportunity to build a format from the ground up, why didn’t they take the opportunity to tackle the two things we use images for the most (digital photography and photos on the web)? By not doing so, PNG left the door open for yet another proprietary format to take hold.
MS also has half a dozen excellent new fonts in the hopper – the six Cs. I could see myself growing to love Calibri.