Smaller movies are right here with AV1, so why is Qualcomm ready for VVC?

Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC up close


  • A Qualcomm consultant prompt that the corporate will skip AV1 encoding.
  • The consultant hinted that Qualcomm might skip to VVC encoding as an alternative.
  • This may enable for a lot smaller file sizes when recording video on cellular.

Qualcomm launched the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset in November 2022, and it’s powering the top-end smartphones from quite a lot of manufacturers. One notable multimedia-related addition is AV1 decode/playback assist.

Why AV1 playback issues

The AV1 codec is a royalty-free, open-source video codec that gives higher video high quality and as much as 30% smaller file sizes than the Excessive Effectivity Video Codec (HEVC) utilized by many firms and content material companies immediately. Extra particularly, you must anticipate both the identical high quality with the smaller file dimension or higher high quality for a similar file dimension.

These benefits have resulted in cellular chipsets from Samsung, Google, MediaTek, and now Qualcomm all providing AV1 decode/playback assist. Moreover, Netflix and YouTube have been providing AV1 video streams to supported Android telephones since 2020, utilizing this codec to avoid wasting bandwidth for customers.

The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 and chipsets from different manufacturers nonetheless depend on the older HEVC codec for recording movies on telephones although, however will we really see AV1 encode (e.g. recording) capabilities come to cellular chipsets? Sadly, it sounds such as you shouldn’t maintain out for Qualcomm to implement this function.

Qualcomm to skip AV1 encoding?

Qualcomm vp of product administration for cameras Judd Heape prompt to Android Authority that the corporate will skip AV1 encoding in favor of a future video codec.

“I don’t see AV1 encode getting loads of traction in cellular, let me put it that manner,” Heape famous in an interview, including that the corporate thought VVC (Versatile Video Codec) might be higher than AV1 when it comes to encoding effectivity.

There’s not that a lot demand for it (AV1). And in cellular, I believe our subsequent codec that we are going to in all probability implement won’t be AV1 encode. It is going to be one thing else like VVC, sure. I can’t inform you when, I can’t inform you the merchandise, however I believe as a complete, Qualcomm could be very occupied with VVC going ahead.

Heape additionally defined that the AV1 encoder is “fairly difficult” and that the “price versus return” for it probably isn’t as engaging on cellular in comparison with the prevailing HEVC encoding assist.

The Qualcomm consultant famous that it’s going to provide AV1 encoding assist in different product segments, however that the legacy H.264 and HEVC encoding capabilities “are gonna final us for a couple of extra years” on cellular.

It appears unusual for Qualcomm and different chipmakers to keep away from AV1 encoding proper now, given its free and open-source nature. Nonetheless, HEVC nonetheless appears to do a fairly good job for the time being. Moreover, Heape’s feedback concerning effectivity recommend that your cellphone’s battery life could be impacted by recording a video with AV1 encoding.

What’s the take care of VVC?

There’s certainly a brand new codec within the works dubbed VVC or H.266. This promises to ship the identical video high quality as HEVC at half the file dimension. Moreover, it’s claimed that VVC will allow 4K video content material supply at file sizes presently used for HD content material. In saying so, VVC isn’t a free and open-source codec (not like AV1), so firms might want to pay to make use of it.

Nonetheless, we’re eager to see smartphones and SoCs adopting this codec sooner or later, because it ought to allow a lot smaller file sizes when recording video. This codec is especially essential in gentle of smartphone video developments like 8K recording, 4K/120fps video, and different superior video choices.