China’s AVS Specifications Available
Its old news that China has developed their own Audio Video Standard to avoid high licensing fees for MPEG standards. They also rolled out their own version of HD-DVD standard which allows use of this codec on DVDs.
English translation of the standard is now available, along with the IPR policy. Finally something technical that you can get your hands on to feed your appetite. Unfortunately, it is not a freely downloadable document. You will need to fill a form and wait for them to contact you, and possibly also pay some fees.
Just how huge the licensing fee difference can get? Well, the Chinese group had set a price goal of 1 yuan, or 13 cents, for the audio and video compression technology in each video player; this far undercuts the typical $2.50 license fees for the MPEG-2 compression technology used in standard DVD players today.
And if you are like me and are wondering if this codec will ever matter, many top-tier chipmakers are offering support for this codec that will be used in the domestic IPTV, satellite and possibly the cable TV market. Both Broadcom Corp. and Conexant Systems Inc. are working on chips for China’s AVS. They join STMicroelectronics, which already supports the codec in software, and is spinning a hardware optimized version that will be ready by the fourth quarter, 2007.