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Amazon, Cisco, Google, Intel, Microsoft, Mozilla and Netflix are teaming up to revamp the way video works over the Internet. The companies have joined together as the Alliance for Open Media to create a new open source video format. The new format will be royalty free, meaning any company can build software for creating or converting video in the format without paying a fee.

Intel agreed to buy Altera Corp. for $16.7B to defend its presence in data centers, following Avago Technologies Ltd. agreeing to buy Broadcom Corp. for $37B. Definitely a record year for semiconductor industry consolidation.

Flat revenue projections is forcing companies slow to respond to market changes to look to acquisitions for continued growth. Hopefully all the consolidation will once again open the door for numerous innovative startups.

A number of leading companies from the online video ecosystem are jointly to form the Streaming Video Alliance with the aim of facilitating the creation of architecture, standards and best practices that will scale the infrastructure for online video and improve efficiency for all providers in the ecosystem while preserving a high quality experience for consumers.

The Alliance members, comprised of a variety of industry leaders from the entire online video value chain and open to all companies from all sectors, include: Alcatel-Lucent, Charter Communications, Cisco, Comcast, EPIX, Fox Networks Group, Korea Telecom, Level 3 Communications, Liberty Global, Limelight Networks, Major League Baseball Advanced Media, Qwilt, Telecom Italia, Telstra, Ustream, Wowza Media Systems and Yahoo!.

The DVB-UHDTV Phase 1 specification updates ETSI TS 101 154 to add HEVC/H.265 Profiles for DVB HDTV (using HEVC Main profile level 4.1) and UDHTV (using HEVC Main 10 profile, Level 5.1) broadcasting services. Contrast will be drastically improved by increasing the number of bits per pixel to 10 bit.

Many hardware vendors will soon support VP9 in their products and allow Google’s YouTube to stream UHD 4K content to computers, TVs and mobile devices. Current hardware partners include ARM, Broadcom, Intel, LG, Marvell, MediaTek, Nvidia, Panasonic, Philips, Qualcomm, RealTek, Samsung, Sigma Designs, Sharp, Sony and Toshiba. Support for VP9 will be in many 2015-model TVs and Blu-ray players, while computers and mobile devices will start supporting it during 2014.

Lot of people are wondering why they keep comparing VP9 to H.264 instead of H.265…

September 12, 2013

4K Blu-ray coming?

An announcement by Singulus Technologies, a maker of replication machines that produce Blu-ray discs, points toward a new standard for 4K Blu-ray. “After all, there would be no other use for a machine capable of manufacturing factory-pressed 100GB discs if a hardware update was not imminent.”

With H.265 video compression and HDMI 2.0 finally available, perhaps it is time to roll one of these out…

The first ever showing of DVB-C2 delivering 4K video is part of a three-way demonstration, that also includes delivery using DVB-S2 and DVB-T2.