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Mozilla reconsiders its stance on h.264 video codec

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#1 +Frank B.

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 10:55

Mozilla reconsiders its stance on h.264 video codec


Mozilla may be acquiescing when it comes to only supporting open and free standards, as it seems the popular h.264 video codec will soon be accessible on Mozilla'sBoot2Gecko project and Firefox for Android. Andreas Gal, Mozilla's director of research,outlined the plan that would allow mobile versions of it's open-source browsers to use h.264 when it's available via a device's operating system. Using the codec this way would allow the organization to avoid the $5 million in licensing fees that it would have to pay to include the h.264 within its browser.

Part of Mozilla's commitment to producing browsers is to use free, open, and unencumbered standards. As such, it had previously shirked h.264 for HTML5 video playback, instead putting its support behind Ogg Theora and later Google's WebM, hoping Google's industry clout would help drive the adoption of the new codec. However, Google has not followed through with its promise to take out h.264 support from Chrome in favor of WebM exclusively. Partially as a result of having support in Chrome (along with every other major web browser), h.264 has risen in popularity as the de facto encoding standard for web video.

This isn't the first time that Mozilla has had to examine whether gaining more compatibility is worth compromising its core values. The organization considered adopting CSS page rendering rules from WebKit for its mobile offerings, despite the fact that those rules are technically not part of the W3C standards.

With the rise in popularity of WebKit-specific CSS and h.264 — technologies that don't necessarily jive with Mozilla's core values — the organization is left with a difficult choice: adopt standards that it doesn't believe are conducive to supporting its vision for a free and open internet, or possibly be left behind.

Source: The Verge


#2 tiagosilva29

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 12:01

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If they do that I'll just switch to Epiphany for visual browsing.

#3 ViperAFK

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 13:42

About time. The idea behind webm is nice, but I knew it wouldn't end up taking off. Internet Explorer, Chrome, and Safari support h.264 (chrome said they'd remove it, but that was just hogwash)

h.264 is a better codec, with better quality to filesize ratio,.
h.264 has broader hardware support.
h.264 is already commonly used.

Mozilla should just utilize the system decoders in win7/osx/linux (if appropriate gstreamer plugin is installed)

#4 Elliott

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 13:49

About time. They should get better performance out of using system decoders anyway.

#5 The_Decryptor

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 14:47

It's a shame really, Google didn't follow through on their promise, and none of the hardware partners have either (At least I think none of them have).

WebM is still the most reliable format in this situation, but on some platforms Firefox would be able to decode H.264 as well (And Mozilla don't have to pay for it, or suffer from the patents, so it's a "win" for them).

#6 Ci7

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 14:52

good news.

about time, along the line of ' do or die '

#7 Mike Allen

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 03:24

Very smart move.

#8 Glassed Silver

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 03:29

Hallelujah!

Glassed Silver:mac

#9 ThePitt

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 23:22

Now I see how this piece s*it (version 11) was fooling me. To make the hardware acceleration works "properly" it uses the NVIDIA Stereoscopic 3D driver. Piece of CRAP. The funny thing is that process nvSCPAPISvr.exe is wellknow as a fuc*kin trojan, which, replaces the original file with its own code. This is WHY I dont use ANY NVidia or any other STUPID service.
Now back to 3.x or OPERA, which WORKS better, startup FASTER and DONT use ANY stupid service.

#10 Detection

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 23:37

Now I see how this piece s*it (version 11) was fooling me. To make the hardware acceleration works "properly" it uses the NVIDIA Stereoscopic 3D driver. Piece of CRAP. The funny thing is that process nvSCPAPISvr.exe is wellknow as a fuc*kin trojan, which, replaces the original file with its own code. This is WHY I dont use ANY NVidia or any other STUPID service.
Now back to 3.x or OPERA, which WORKS better, startup FASTER and DONT use ANY stupid service.


Drugs are bad... Mm'kay ?

#11 +M2Ys4U

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 23:42

This is a shame, the web needs a free codec :(

#12 Tony.

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 23:50

Now I see how this piece s*it (version 11) was fooling me. To make the hardware acceleration works "properly" it uses the NVIDIA Stereoscopic 3D driver. Piece of CRAP. The funny thing is that process nvSCPAPISvr.exe is wellknow as a fuc*kin trojan, which, replaces the original file with its own code. This is WHY I dont use ANY NVidia or any other STUPID service.
Now back to 3.x or OPERA, which WORKS better, startup FASTER and DONT use ANY stupid service.


Step away from the internet. :|

#13 Orry Verducci

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 00:00

The interesting thing here is it's possible Mozilla are doing this as a test as such, with the potential to do the same thing later on the desktop. With Windows 7+ and Mac OS X including H.264 and AAC codecs, it's possible to develop Firefox so that it uses the built in system decoders in the same way they are planning for mobile. The only major issue with the desktop which I imagine is what is putting them off so far is that on the Windows side of things it requires at least 7, which isn't ideal as Firefox of course supports older versions.

#14 rfirth

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 00:19

The only major issue with the desktop which I imagine is what is putting them off so far is that on the Windows side of things it requires at least 7, which isn't ideal as Firefox of course supports older versions.

Can't they just detect what OS version they are on, and only provide support for it on Windows 7+? Shouldn't be too difficult.

#15 Orry Verducci

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 00:32

Can't they just detect what OS version they are on, and only provide support for it on Windows 7+? Shouldn't be too difficult.

Of course they could, but the issue is I imagine they want to provide a consistant experience on all versions of Windows, for both users and developers.