[webkit-dev] Is WebKit suitable for a gaming platform?

Paul Pedriana ppedriana at gmail.com
Thu May 22 23:06:32 PDT 2008

We are considering porting WebKit to work on gaming consoles (e.g. XBox 
360, PlayStation 3). We want to have browsing functionality within our 

The primary issue with this is likely to be one of memory. When running 
within a game, a web browser has little more than a few megabytes of RAM 
to work with, as the rest of the game will be needing the majority of 
the memory. Since much of the time the user will be going to web sites 
under our control (usually our own web site), we can omit browser 
functionality that isn't going to be needed, such as SVG display and 
support for unusual languages. Also, it's OK if some speed is sacrificed 
as a result of reducing memory requirements (e.g. for memory and font 

We have talked to commercial mobile web browser providers (like phone 
browsers), and they can run in as little as 2MB of heap space for simple 
web pages, yet are standards-compliant. And our own in-house browser 
which we wrote but would rather not maintain runs in as little as 512 KB 
of heap space. So we have reason to feel that < 5MB is a reasonable 
target. We realize that huge pages and graphics are going to use more 
memory than this baseline.

Key question(s): What is the minimum amount of heap space that WebKit 
requires in order to run? Is WebKit efficient with memory? Are we 
possibly likely to have any success in this endeavor?


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