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Tech giants partner up to build next-gen, open source video codecs

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Amazon Prime Instant Video vs Netflix

Some of the biggest names in tech have banded together in order to create the next generation of UHD video formats.

Amazon, Netflix, Intel, Google, Microsoft, Mozilla and Cisco have announced the formation of the Alliance for Open Media.

The group aims to build “the open and royalty-free format for next generation ultra high definition media.”

Each of the companies is contributing technology from its current projects in order to develop media formats, codecs and technologies the alliance says are “in the public interest.”

"The new Alliance is committing its collective technology and expertise to meet growing Internet demand for top-quality video, audio, imagery and streaming across devices of all kinds and for users worldwide," the group said on its official site.

"The initial project will pursue a new, open royalty-free video codec specification and open-source implementation based on the contributions of members, along with binding specifications for media format, content encryption and adaptive streaming, thereby creating opportunities for next-generation media experiences."

The boon for everyone involved will be inter-operability of video standards across different services, which will be useable across a variety of bandwidths and hardware set-ups. It’ll also mean the companies won’t have to hand over royalties to individual companies like MPEG LA.

Related: Amazon Prime Instant Video vs Netflix

As TechCrunch points out, the alliance will also be of great use to streaming companies like Amazon and Netflix as any new technology will support video encryption, allowing the streaming giant to make deals with content owners.

The Alliance says it will offer more companies the opportunity to join later this year.

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