VP8 video content can already be played on nearly all browsers, Firefox, Opera, Chrome, and Internet Explorer (via an addon), however, for VP8 to be successful it will need more than just support in software. Software is flexible and adaptable enough to add support at any point, however to enable playback on devices that rely on hardware acceleration for video content, it needs hardware support as well.
Google has been releasing hardware encoder and decoder designs so that device creators can incorporate hardware acceleration for playing back and encoding content in their devices. The third release “Cloudberry” of their hardware encoder IP is now available from Google.
Cloudberry brings quality improvements to the hardware, improving on the previous “Blueberry” design by 0.45 dB PSNR. Google has also managed to push the bitrate required to encode 720p (1280x720 resolution) video down to below 1Mbps.
Google already has its targets set for the next release at the end of Q3 this year, in which it aims to improve quality by focusing on the software component of the encoder. By improving the software encoder they can get quality improvements even on older hardware. The “Cloudberry” release software, for example, brings a 0.08 dB PSNR improvement even on the older “Blueberry” hardware.
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