November 29, 2022
Google Announces it Will Drop H.264 Support From Chrome

Google Announces it Will Drop H.264 Support From Chrome

Posted January 11, 2011 at 5:43pm by iClarified · 10872 views
Google has announced that it will drop support for the H.264 video codec from its Chrome browser.

We expect even more rapid innovation in the web media platform in the coming year and are focusing our investments in those technologies that are developed and licensed based on open web principles. To that end, we are changing Chrome’s HTML5 video support to make it consistent with the codecs already supported by the open Chromium project. Specifically, we are supporting the WebM (VP8) and Theora video codecs, and will consider adding support for other high-quality open codecs in the future. Though H.264 plays an important role in video, as our goal is to enable open innovation, support for the codec will be removed and our resources directed towards completely open codec technologies.

This is extremely disappointing news for web publishers. Up to this point Firefox has been the only hold out against H.264. Recently the MPEG LA made H.264 video permanently royalty-free and many hoped this would finally lead to a universally accepted video format.

Google is pushing its WebM format which is hardly used and doesn't currently offer hardware decoding. Google claims to be pushing for openness but as Daring Fireball's John Gruber notes their actions are highly hypocritical.

"Here's a thought. If Google is dropping support for H.264 because their "goal is to enable open innovation", why don’t they also drop support for closed plugins like Flash Player? As it stands now, Chrome not only supports Flash, it ships with its own embedded copy of Flash. I don’t see how Google keeps Flash but drops H.264 in the name of "openness" without being seen as utter hypocrites."

When asked about WebM, Steve Jobs offer a link to an analysis of the format that called it imprecise, unclear, overly short, and so similar to H.264 that it will likely cause a lawsuit.

Read More [via DaringFireball]


Google Announces it Will Drop H.264 Support From Chrome
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justabrake
justabrake - January 12, 2011 at 11:30am
http://www.geohot.com/ served with papers
Randy
Randy - January 12, 2011 at 1:43am
FUCK A GOOGLE CHROME NOW!
Nick
Nick - January 11, 2011 at 5:59pm
There's no better way to piss off your consumers than to take away a feature as big as this, good thing I don't use Chrome or I'd be pissed.
Pissed off user
Pissed off user - January 11, 2011 at 7:11pm
NOOOO!!!! WTF!! CHROME WAS THE BEST WEB BROWSER, NOW ITS GOING TO BE SHIT. DONT MAKE ME RESORT TO SAFARI OR FIREFOX, ETC.
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