The Daala Video Codec Still Needs At Least Another Year Of Development

Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software on 19 January 2015 at 05:35 PM EST. 23 Comments
The Daala open-source, royalty-free video codec being developed by Xiph.Org and other organizations continues to be developed as an alternative to H.265 and VP9. While much progress is being made, it looks like another year of heavy development will be needed before Daala is ready for primetime.

Timothy Terriberry of Mozilla talked at last week's 2015 Linux.Conf.Au conference about his work on the Daala video codec via Xiph.Org. His presentation is certainly worth watching for anyone into royalty-free audio/video codecs and learning how the Daala developers are working around patents and how Daala is ultimately aimed as a next-generation competitor to H.265/HEVC and VP9.

At some bit-rates, Daala is already winning compared to x264 and x265. Daala's progress in part can be tracked via their web-site. Timothy feels though that Daala still needs another year of development before it's "ready" as a video codec.

When asked why not focus efforts on improving VP9 as a royalty-free codec rather than designing Daala, Terriberry responded, that not everyone in the world is fully convinced by VP9 that it's royalty-free in fully working around any potential patent/legal issues. He did share that Google is currently working on the VP10 codec and he hopes they'll be able to form a joint-standard in the future with Xiph.Org.

Later asked about Xiph.Org's Opus audio codec, he said that "Opus is done", and that it was a lot of work to get it through the IETF and that it's done but there's still more opportunities for writing better Opus encoders.

Watch Timothy Terriberry's Daala presentation below from LCA2015 in Auckland.

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