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YouTube adds 4K streaming, VP9 gets strong support

Jan 3 2014, 1:05am CST | by , in News | Technology News

YouTube adds 4K streaming, VP9 gets strong support
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YouTube will be streaming 4K resolution soon using Google's new VP9 video compression standard.

Google is starting the year with a bang by announcing support for 4K streaming on its popular video service, YouTube. This will be made possible by using its open and royalty-free video compression standard called VP9.

While the news is exciting, Google is particularly happy that the VP8 successor is finally getting the attention it deserves. You may recall that Google had plans of using the VP8 video code as the default format for plugin-free video streaming. But unfortunately, Google didn't have enough hardware support.

Today, however, Google is announcing a list of hardware partners for VP9. Hardware partners include Samsung, Sharp, Toshiba, ARM, Intel, Broadcom, and Marvell.

Francisco Varela, the global director of platform partnerships at YouTube, says that the use of the codec will not only allow YouTube to stream 4K resolution, but it will also minimize the amount of bandwidth needed to stream HD videos by half.

While Varela says that we won't be seeing TVs supporting VP9 this year, they should ship by 2015. He added that VP9 will also arrive on moble devices and PCs first. 

Source: GigaOM

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