Google Announces Open Media with Microsoft, Netflix & More

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Today’s been a pretty big news day, coming out of Mountain View. Not only did Google unveil a new logo – as well as pushing updates to all their apps to include the new logo – but Google has also announced a brand new alliance. This one is for open media. Google is joining the likes of Microsoft, Netflix, Mozilla, Amazon and a few other companies. The goal of this new alliance is to work together and create open digital formats for “next-generation ultra high-definition media”. Basically what they mean is they are looking for formats to develop new image, audio and video. These formats would be totally free for non-commercial and commercial use.

The reasoning behind this is patents. For quite some time now, there have been patent disputes in regards to the different formats used for video as well as the codecs used for audio and video. Google has attempted to remedy that with their WebP and WebM codecs that are used in Chrome. There’s also all the licensing non-sense going on as well, hopefully this new alliance can get around that.

Google is a founding member, along with 6 other pretty large corporations. And because of that, it’s likely that adoption of these new formats and codecs will be pretty easy once they are developed. This is going to be a good thing for some of Google’s properties like YouTube and Blogger, both of which are media properties and use images, audio and video. You can check out the Alliance for Open Media’s website for more info, their link will be in the source section down below.

These alliances seem to be a popular thing for Google. This is at least their third alliance in the past 5 years. There was the Open Handset Alliance which was put together to get Android updates out quicker. Well that never really came to fruition. Then there was the Open Automotive Alliance, which appears to be going well, so far although it’s mostly geared towards Android Auto. It’ll be interesting to see how this alliance works out over time, especially given that they are working with a number of their competitors.