Apple Developing New High-End Video Codec?


Hardmac reports that Apple may be preparing to roll-out a new high-end video codec to compete against the existing H.264 standard of which it has been a staunch proponent.

First, a transition towards better codec, dropping the efficient but CPU-consuming encoding codec H.264 for adopting Wavelet transform-type of codec which will allow even better compression rate while offering better efficiency. This type of compression was already used for the JPEG 2000 format. If we did not get confirmation yet, we can suspect that Apple will be using a format evolving or directly originating from Dirac.

The Dirac codec was initially developed by the BBC, but is notable for being royalty-free with a commitment from the developers to steer clear of infringement of any third-party patents. Dirac's performance, however, seems to leave much to be desired, and while it is still an immature standard that Apple would obviously be working to considerably enhance, it remains unclear whether it would be Apple to displace H.264 as a first-choice web standard for video compression.

The report claims that the goal would be for Apple to support delivery of up to 4K resolution video of 4096x2304, as recently embraced by YouTube. But while the report says that Apple would thus be targeting high-end applications initially, it remains unclear exactly what deployment strategy would be and whether it will even see the project through to a public release.

Due to the sketchy details and seemingly questionable nature of the rumor, we are publishing it on Page 2 for the time being for interest and discussion.