Re: [rtcweb] Proposal for H.263 baseline codec

Piers O'Hanlon <> Thu, 29 March 2012 12:48 UTC

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From: Piers O'Hanlon <>
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Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2012 14:48:35 +0200
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Subject: Re: [rtcweb] Proposal for H.263 baseline codec
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On 29 Mar 2012, at 14:30, <> wrote:

> Hi,
> I support Dean’s proposal to make H.263 as the mandatory-to-implement codec. I’m not expert on profiles, but someone mentioned H.263 profile 0 as something suitable for our needs (smallest IPR risk).
> I also believe that even making H.261 as the mandatory-to-implement would be better than going for the forced pseudo-random selection between H.264 or VP8.
One of the key limitations with H.261 is it's small range of available supported resolutions (QCIF, Max:CIF(352x288)) - so if there is a low IPR risk for an H.263(+?) configuration then it would be preferable. 

The whole issue of which Profile and levels one might support for these codecs is another issue as I think they lead to differing IPR dependencies.


> Markus
> From: [] On Behalf Of ext Dean Willis
> Sent: 29 March, 2012 15:16
> To:
> Subject: [rtcweb] Proposal for H.263 baseline codec
> In today's meeting I made a plea for a mandatory baseline codec that is approachable to the small developer without the cost and IPR risks of either H.264 or VP8.
> I believe that some sort of baseline codec is required to jump start the protocol. It's OK if this isn't the best possible codec. Market forces will assure that commercial implementations converge on a higher quality when the market requires it.
> While I proposed today that H.261 could serve as a baseline, we know this would be "extremely basic". In other words, it might not pass the "good enough to use" test required for a successful launch.
> Stephane and several others suggested H.263 as an alternative during the after-meeting chat. While it is not as IPR-safe a choice as H.261, it is relatively mature and the known challenges have generally failed. Implementations are reasonably available and should make it possible for smaller implementers, students, and hobbyists to play ball. It's not all that network efficient and is outright piggy at higher resolutions, but it probably works "well enough to use."
> So I propose we set H.263 as the baseline ( I expect a bit of profiling may be necessary to further qualify the baseline) and run with that for now. If the situation changes, we can always replace it before final publication.
> --
> Dean
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