Vidyo, Inc., the first company to deliver personal telepresence, and Samsung Electronics, Co. Ltd. cooperatively submitted a response to the call for proposals for scalable coding extensions of the High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) standard. Vidyo also contributed technology to the response to the call by Canon Research Centre France. The HEVC standard is being jointly developed by the ITU-T and ISO MPEG groups and is expected to be standardized in the ITU-T as H.265. Its goal is to cut in half the bit-rate required to deliver video of the same quality as today’s dominant H.264 codec. Vidyo pioneered the use of Scalable Video Coding in video conferencing in 2007 by using the scalable extension of H.264 in its software-based adaptive video architecture. It is now contributing its extensive experience in scalable video codec design and implementation to the HEVC standard to ensure that it will have the necessary features for real-time video communication over the Internet and wireless networks. Vidyo’s contributions to the HEVC project contain technical designs from 19 related pending Vidyo patent applications.
“Vidyo’s products and business traction have shown that the right way to do video communication on the Internet and on mobile devices is to use the VidyoRouter architecture with scalable video coding,” says Alex Eleftheriadis, Vidyo’s Chief Scientist and co-founder. “This architecture eliminates the need for transcoding and enables ‘technology transparency’, providing an experience uninterrupted by performance flaws arising from issues like network reliability, MCU driven latency, or end-point capabilities. As a result, any new codec design intended for real-time communication will need to have scalability, and we are happy to be part of the HEVC process as we were with H.264 SVC. Vidyo is already ‘HEVC ready’ and will be software-upgradeable when the new codec is released.”
Vidyo has taken a leadership position in the effort to standardize scalable video coding for both existing H.264 and emerging HEVC codecs. Since it was introduced to the market in 2008, the VidyoRouter architecture has taken full advantage of this codec, enabling Vidyo to transform the industry by delivering transcoding-less, low latency and high fidelity video communication between Vidyo’s own SVC based endpoints. Subsequently, major players in the industry, including Microsoft and Polycom, have announced that they will add scalable video coding to their systems. This will enable all players to interoperate without transcoding. Vidyo customers will be able to have transcoding-less, natural video communication experience in a multi-vendor environment without the need for a media gateway.
“Vidyo has been a been an active participant in the HEVC standardization process, encouraging the standards bodies to extend HEVC to support scalability and, starting in January 2011, making technical contributions with proposed scalable coding tools,” says Jill Boyce, Vidyo’s Director of Algorithms, and Author of Vidyo’s Response to the Call for Proposals for the Scalable Coding Extension to HEVC. “Vidyo’s significant technical contributions demonstrate that HEVC’s proposed scalable coding extension can provide similar advantages in coding efficiency for scalable coding as HEVC offers for non-scalable coding.”
Since true interoperability also requires standardization of media transport and signaling, Vidyo has been actively driving standards in these arenas as they pertain to scalable video coding for video conferencing. For example, Vidyo has participated in the development of RFC 6190 that defines how SVC video is transported over the Internet, as well as SVC extensions to H.241 which specifies how video connections are set up in H.323 endpoints. Vidyo’s continued contributions to these standards are intended to ensure interoperability of this new generation of video communication solutions.
“Vidyo was founded on the vision of making personal telepresence ubiquitously available,” said Ofer Shapiro, CEO and co-founder at Vidyo. “Well designed and flexible standards that promote interoperability between different vendors’ solutions, while supporting differentiated technological innovations like the VidyoRouter architecture, are crucial to achieving this vision. This is why Vidyo has taken the lead in the development of standards around scalable video coding; largely due to our uniquely talented and experienced in-house technologists and the significant contributions of intellectual property they have made.
Earlier this year, Vidyo announced it was ready to test its implementation of ITU approved extensions to the H.241 standard for SVC signaling at IMTC SuperOp with other industry players. While others were not ready with their own implementations at that time, Vidyo anticipates greater participation this year, as other industry members begin to bring their first generation of scalable video coding supported solutions to market.
The Vidyo Difference
The Vidyo communication and collaboration platform is software-based, highly flexible and can be easily customized for individual enterprise and vertical market video conferencing needs. The VidyoRouter™ is based on the company’s patented Adaptive Video Layering architecture and leverages Scalable Video Coding (SVC)-based technology. It eliminates the MCU and offers unprecedented error resiliency, low latency and rate matching enabling natural, affordable, high quality video to work over the Internet, LTE, 3G and 4G networks. The Vidyo platform allows users to quickly leverage the latest hardware innovations and new consumer devices, making it uniquely attractive to partners. Vidyo has been active driving H.264 SVC, HEVC and SIP videoconferencing interoperability in various standards bodies since 2005.
Vidyo, Inc. pioneered Personal Telepresence enabling natural, HD multi-point videoconferences on tablets, smart phones, PCs and Macs, room systems, gateways, telepresence solutions and affordable cloud-based broadcast solutions. Headquartered in the US, with 12 additional international offices, the company has more than 250 employees and has to date raised $99M.