A new video encoding system is getting close to approval. H.264 or MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding as it’s otherwise known, is thought to be able to reach DVD-quality broadcasts at slightly under 1Mbps. Some are sceptical about it being taken up for STB’s, as it will require about three to four times the computing horsepower needed for MPEG-2 – up to now pretty low power chips have been installed in STB’s. It is thought that the proposal should be ratified as part of the MPEG-4 (Moving Picture Experts Group) multimedia standard by year’s end.
The MS comment was that their proprietary CODEC was much more efficient – but in true MS style, the leader of the overseeing committee is an employee of Microsoft.