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January 3, 2014

New Video Codec Could Eliminate The Spinning Wheel

Google's VP9 Gaining Support As CES Nears

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Photo Credit: meneame comunicacions, sl via flickr

Streaming may consume nearly half the amount of bandwidth with Google on the cusp of unveiling VP9.

The company announced it will debut VP9 video codec, a 4K video format, in Las Vegas next week. Google has been working with hardware producers so devices including televisions, Smartphones and computers can stream 4K content while using less bandwidth.

For example, videos on YouTube, through VP9, will start faster and streaming will take less time with definite improvements seen when it comes to HD video.

This is not a new step for Google. Back in 2010 it unleashed VP8 with the belief, then, being it would be the codec that all would rely on for streaming and communication. The industry, though, saw things differently. Hardware support was missing and competition quickly established their own formats meaning the codec failed to achieve its goal.

Expect something different this time.

When Google unveils VP9 at the Consumers Electronics Show in Las Vegas it will do so with the support of major names ranging from Sony, Toshiba, Samsung, Panasonic, Philips, LG and Sharp.

That’s not to say Google won’t be coming in to the market without competition. 4K video is also standard with H.265 which is being promoted by the International Telecommunications Union.

Francisco Varela, global director of platform partnerships at Google-owned YouTube, seems confident in the codec. Website gigaom.com quoted Varela as saying users, by 2015, will “be surprised every time you see that spinning wheel.”

The new format will allow videos to be shown at a higher resolution opening the door for device makers to stream those videos with much less bandwidth and buffering.


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W. Brice McVicar is a staff writer for SiteProNews.

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