AOMedia AV1 Video Codec Specifications Released

AOMedia’s AV1 video codec is an open source, royalty-free video codec aiming to surpass H.265 capabilities, and considering the savings to be made, as no royalties need to be paid, and potentially lower bandwidth requirements, many companies are on board including Google, Arm, Facebook,. Amazon, Apple, Intel, Cisco, and many others. Back in February we got an AV1 progress update at FOSDEM 2018, and the speaker explained there was still a few items to work out to finalize the specifications. This is now complete, as AOMedia (The Alliance for Open Media) has just released the (draft) specifications. Beside the Bitstream specification, the AV1 release includes: Unoptimized, experimental software decoder and encoder to create and consume the bitstream Reference streams for product validation Binding specifications to allow content creation and streaming tools for user-generated and commercial video AV1 has already been shown to outperform both H.265 and VP9 in tests using […]

AV1 Open Source Video Codec Update at FOSDEM 2018 (Video)

We first covered the Alliance for Open Media’s AV1 video codec in summer 2016, as an open source, royalty-free video codec aiming to replace VP9, and compete or even surpass H.265 capabilities. At the time, everything was pretty new, and when I tried the open source implementation encoding was really slow. Since then, AV1 has gained momentum with for example Apple, Facebook, and IBM recently joining AOMedia, and Mozilla adding HTML5 AV1 video support to Firefox Nightly builds at the end of last year. I was able to play a 720p video @ 800 Kbps almost smoothly in my computer based on AMD FX8350 processor. Many companies want AV1 to succeed since they may not be willing to pay MPEG LA license fee for H.265 and future MPEG codecs (e.g. H.266), and there indeed seems to be issues with the currently MPEG licensing business model. However, AV1 is not quite […]

Mozilla Adds HTML5 AV1 Video Support to Firefox 59 Nightly Builds

Last year, we wrote about AV1 royalty-free open source video codec managed by the Alliance for Open Media (AOMedia), a non-profit organization with members such as Amazon, Cisco, Google, Intel, Microsoft, Mozilla, and other companies. Eventually AV1 should be 25 to 35% more efficiency than H.265 or VP9, but encoding will be slower, and at the time, my AMD FX8350 based computer could encode CIF (352×288) video  at less than 0.5 fps, and I had to use command line tools to encode and decode/playback the videos. But thing are progressing nicely, and it’s now possible to stream AV1 video with HTML5 / in Firefox 59.0 (nightly) using Bitmovin Player. If you are using Ubuntu, you can also install Firefox nightly as follow:

Start it and visit the demo page to stream an AV1 MPEG-DASH/HLS stream in your web browser. It works from 360p @ 200 Kbps up to 720p […]

AOMedia AV1 is a Royalty-free, Open Source Video Codec Aiming to Replace VP9 and Compete with H.265

The Alliance for Open Media, or AOMedia, is a new non-profit organization founded in 2015 by Amazon, Cisco, Google, Intel Corporation, Microsoft, Mozilla, and Netflix, and more recently joined by AMD, ARM, and NVIDIA, whose first project is to develop AV1 royalty-free and open video codec and format to provide an alternative to H.265 / HEVC, and a successor to VP9. The project is a team effort combining teams working on Daala, Thor, and VP10 video codecs, and while AFAIK, AV1 specifications have not been released yet (target: Q1 2017), the organization has already released an early implementation of AV1 video decoder and encoder under the combination of an BSD-2 clause license and the Alliance for Open Media Patent License 1.0 , which can be found on So I’ve had a quick my myself following the instructions, by first downloading one uncompressed YUV4MPEG sample:

and the source code: