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02 February 2012, 10:17

VP8 decoding gets faster with SDK update

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WebM logo The WebM project has announced a new release of the open source VP8 Codec SDK (libvpx), named "Duclair". VP8 is the core of the open WebM video format which was launched by Google as an alternative to the h.264 open but royalty bearing standard, and which has also been adopted by Mozilla, Adobe, Opera and Skype.

The developers focused on improving performance in this release and are reporting a 10.5% increase in decoder speed on x86 processors and between 1% and 10% improvement, depending on speed settings, in encoding speed. The "Duclair" release, named after a French breed of duck, also fixes a crashing bug found in the previous release, Cayuga. The new SDK is incompatible, at an ABI level, with previous releases and developers will need to recompile their applications. The ABI incompatible change means the SDK version number has been incremented to 1.0.0.

New features introduced into the Duclair release's encoder include temporal scalability, which can create streams made up of substreams running at different frame rates, multiframe postprocessing, to ensure more consistent video quality and multiple-resolution encoding which allows one encoding run to produce output at different resolutions in one pass. Full details of the changes are available. The SDK can be downloaded from the WebM project's download directory or cloned from its git repository. VP8 and related software is covered by a combination of licences and patent rights grants.


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