Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264 - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Mobile
News
1/11/2011
06:04 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

The Web video cold war has broken into open conflict.

Google on Tuesday said that it plans to drop support for the H.264 video codec in its Chrome browser and to embrace WebM, the video codec that it acquired in 2009 and released last year as open source software.

The move is a direct challenge to Apple and Microsoft, which own some of the patent rights associated with H.264. Those rights are managed by MPEG LA, an intellectual property licensing organization.

Citing expected innovation in Web technology in the coming year and its commitment to technologies that are developed and licensed using open Web principles, Google product manager Mike Jazayeri said that in a few months, Google will shift to supporting the WebM and Theora video codecs to render video published using the HTML5 video tag and will end support for H.264. (The HTML5 video tag does not require a specific video codec.)

"Though H.264 plays an important role in video, as our goal is to enable open innovation, support for the codec will be removed and our resources directed towards completely open codec technologies," said Jazayeri in a blog post.

This change is unlikely to be noticed by Internet users, at least initially. Chrome supports Adobe's Flash technology, which will render H.264 video even after Google begins using WebM and Theora in Chrome. Thus Chrome users who view H.264 video once support is discontinued will see H.264 video in a Flash wrapper. This is the way that Firefox currently operates.

Google's decision will have an impact on businesses, particularly video publishers, who will have to decide whether to re-encode their videos to deliver optimized content to users of Chrome and Firefox, which will be supporting WebM in its 4.0 release.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Previous
1 of 2
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Slideshows
IT Careers: 10 Industries with Job Openings Right Now
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  5/27/2020
Commentary
How 5G Rollout May Benefit Businesses More than Consumers
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  5/21/2020
News
IT Leadership in Education: Getting Online School Right
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  5/20/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
The State of IT & Cybersecurity Operations 2020
The State of IT & Cybersecurity Operations 2020
Download this report from InformationWeek, in partnership with Dark Reading, to learn more about how today's IT operations teams work with cybersecurity operations, what technologies they are using, and how they communicate and share responsibility--or create risk by failing to do so. Get it now!
Video
Current Issue
Key to Cloud Success: The Right Management
This IT Trend highlights some of the steps IT teams can take to keep their cloud environments running in a safe, efficient manner.
Slideshows
Flash Poll