In recent blog posts, we discussed
an issue that we encountered when attempting to run WebXPRT 4 on iOS 17 devices.
If you missed those posts, you can find more details about the nature of the
problem here. In
short, the issue is that the Encrypt Notes and OCR scan subtest in WebXPRT 4
gets stuck when the Tesseract.js Optical Character Recognition (OCR) engine
attempts to scan a shopping receipt. We’ve verified that the issue occurs on
devices running iOS 17, iPadOS 17, and macOS Sonoma with Safari 17.
After a good bit of troubleshooting and research to try and identify the cause of the problem, we decided to build an updated version of WebXPRT 4 that uses a newer version of Tesseract for the OCR task. Aside from updating Tesseract in the new build, we aimed to change as little as possible. To try and maximize continuity, we’re still using the original input image for the receipt scanning task, and we decided to stick with using the WASM library instead of a WASM-SIMD library. Aside from a new version of tesseract.js, WebXPRT 4 version number updates, and updated documentation where necessary, all other aspects of WebXPRT 4 will remain the same.
testing a candidate build of this new version on a wide array of devices. The
results so far seem promising, but we want to complete our due diligence and
make sure this is the best approach to solving the problem. We know that OEM
labs and tech reviewers put a lot of time and effort into compiling databases
of results, so we hope to provide a solution that minimizes results disruption
and inconvenience for WebXPRT 4 users. Ideally, folks would be able to
integrate scores from the new build without any questions or confusion about comparability.
We don’t yet have an exact release date for a new WebXPRT 4 build, but we can say that we’re shooting for the end of October. We appreciate everyone’s patience as we work towards the best possible solution. If you have any questions or concerns about an updated version of WebXPRT 4, please let us know.
Recently, we informed XPRT blog readers that after updating Apple iPhones and iPads
to iOS and iPadOS 17, respectively, we began to see WebXPRT 4 failures on those
devices. In the Safari and Google Chrome browsers, WebXPRT 4 test runs were
freezing while running the Encrypt Notes and OCR Scan workload. We were able to
replicate the issue on every iOS/iPadOS 17 device we tested, and we also confirmed
that WebXPRT 4 continues to run without issues on other non-iOS platforms.
Our team has been investigating the situation, and we’ve made some progress. It’s clear that the failed test runs are getting stuck when the WASM-based Tesseract.js Optical Character Recognition (OCR) engine attempts to scan a shopping receipt. During our research, we’ve discovered an issue when the current Tesseract.js engine runs on iOS 17. This issue is broader than WebXPRT 4, and the Tesseract team is aware of the problem. Future versions of iOS 17 or later versions of Tesseract.js may include fixes for the problem, but unfortunately, we don’t know whether or when a fix will be available.
investigating possible workarounds for the problem, and hope to be able to
start testing soon. Our goal is that any solution we implement will not
significantly affect existing WebXPRT 4 scores on non-iOS 17 platforms.
We will continue to share any substantive progress updates with readers here in the blog. Once again, we apologize for any inconvenience this issue causes for WebXPRT 4 users, and we appreciate your patience while we work toward a solution. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us!
One of the core principles of
the BenchmarkXPRT Development Community is a commitment to valuing the feedback
of both community members and the larger group of testers that use the XPRTs on
a regular basis. That feedback helps us to ensure that as the XPRTs continue to
grow and evolve, the resources that we offer will continue to meet the needs of
those that use them.
In the past, user feedback has influenced specific aspects of our benchmarks such as the length of test runs, user interface features, results presentation, and the removal or inclusion of specific workloads. More broadly, we have also received suggestions for entirely new XPRTs and ways we might target emerging technologies or industry use cases.
approach the second half of 2022 and begin planning for 2023, we’re asking to
hear your ideas about new XPRTs—or new features for existing
XPRTs. Are you aware of hardware form factors, software platforms, or prominent
applications that are difficult or impossible to evaluate using existing performance
benchmarks? Are there new technologies we should be incorporating into existing
XPRTs via new workloads? Can you recommend ways to improve any of the XPRTs or
XPRT-related tools such as results viewers?
We are interested in your answers to these questions and any other ideas you have, so please feel free to contact us. We look forward to hearing your thoughts!