[whatwg] on codecs in a 'video' tag.
singer at apple.com
Mon Mar 26 18:18:04 PDT 2007
sorry I wasn't responding last week; I was out of the office,
catching up today. Thanks for all the comments!
On the question of whether a video or audio tag should mention the
codecs: we're really very supportive of the need for convergence and
interoperability. For example, I took a video iPod to an MPEG
meeting a week or two after its intro, and at the meeting I got five
companies, using their own H.264 and AAC and file format
implementations, to build files that would play on it. We've
actively helped 3rd parties be compatible with the iPod and iTunes.
We really do believe in this stuff.
We also have been sometimes openly critical of licensing terms and
problems around codecs; we supported the attempt to get a a
royalty-free baseline for H.264, for example. We recognize the value
of research and invention, but we also realize that to realize a
value from a use of those inventions, the use has to happen and make
business sense. It's a balance...
So, in a sense, you are arguing with friends; we agree on the goal -
interop and convergence - and maybe disagree on how to get there. We
do feel, however, that the HTML spec. is not the place to achieve it
in video and audio. Some have cited the SVG spec. and its mandate of
Ogg, and broad adoption of SVG in mobile, as a positive example. But
alas, all this mandate did was cause 3GPP to write in their streaming
spec., where SVG use is defined:
NOTE 2: Only codecs and MIME media types supported by PSS, as
specified in clause 7 and in subclause 5.4, respectively, shall be
used. In particular, PSS clients are not required to support the Ogg
We really feel that the HTML spec. should say no more about video and
audio formats than it does about image formats (which is merely to
give examples), and we should strive independently for audio/video
convergence. We'd really like to discuss the 'meat' of the proposal
-- the tags, the CSS, and so on!
By the way, these three bodies are quite distinct:
1. MPEG, a working group of the joint ISO/IEC technical committee,
that sets standards
2. MPEGIF, an industry forum that exists to promote MPEG standards
3. MPEG-LA, a commercial entity who represent a pool of IPR owners
for licensing associated with some MPEG standards
Hope this helps...
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