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Google signs patent deal with MPEG LA for VP8 codec

Stops the creation of a patent pool
Fri Mar 08 2013, 16:35
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GOOGLE AND THE MPEG LA CONSORTIUM have signed a licensing deal for the VP8 video codec that is used as part of Google's WebM software.

Google and MPEG LA have been playing a game of cat and mouse over the VP8 video codec that is part of Google's WebM software. Finally the two sides have signed a licensing agreement that allows Google to sublicense the patents to any VP8 user.

MPEG LA is a licensing body that represents 11 patent holders and has been trying to create a patent pool for the VP8 codec. Google on the other hand had open sourced VP8 and allowed users to use it, which in of itself isn't a problem if the software it was licensing was owned by Google, which MPEG LA claimed it wasn't.

MPEG LA said that as part of the licensing agreement with Google, it would not continue to pursue creating a VP8 patent pool.

Allen Lo, Google's deputy general counsel for patents said, "This is a significant milestone in Google's efforts to establish VP8 as a widely deployed web video format. We appreciate MPEG LA's cooperation in making this happen."

Larry Horn, president and CEO of MPEG LA added, "We are pleased for the opportunity to facilitate agreements with Google to make VP8 widely available to users."

MPEG LA said the licensing agreement between itself and Google will carry forward in following generations of the VPx codec and is also backdated to cover previous versions of the codec. µ


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