Intel may add hardware acceleration for Google's WebM

The chip maker is waiting to see if WebM gains popularity

Intel is considering hardware-based acceleration for Google's new WebM video file format in its Atom-based TV chips if the format gains popularity, an Intel executive said on Thursday.

Google last week announced the high-definition WebM video file format to deliver high-quality Web video to multiple devices including TV sets and handhelds. WebM files will include video streams compressed with the open-source VP8 video codec, which was acquired by Google when it bought On2 Technologies in February.

"Just like we did with other codecs like MPEG2, H.264 & VC1, if VP8 establishes itself in the Smart TV space, we will add it to our [hardware] decoders," said Wilfred Martis, general manager for retail consumer electronics at Intel's Digital Home Group.

Intel is working with Google to bring Internet video to TV sets through the Google TV platform, which will blend broadcast TV and Internet content into one interface. Google will supply the software, and the service will be available later this year in some Sony high-definition TVs and Blu-ray DVD players, for which Intel will supply the highly optimized Atom CE4100 chip.

Intel declined to comment on how the lack of hardware acceleration in the CE4100 chips will affect the Google TV project. Google owns YouTube, which is one of the largest video sites on the Internet.

Intel's CE4100 TV chips will be able to decode and play back WebM files using software, Martis said. However, hardware acceleration could provide higher-quality video through faster decoding while consuming less power.

Intel has been trying to woo major TV makers and consumer electronics companies to use the Atom CE4100 chip. The chip includes a processor core that can run at clock speeds of up to 1.2GHz and is capable of decoding two 1080p video streams. The chips are in production, and the company has said it has received orders for more than a million.

A number of hardware and software vendors announced support for the WebM file format, but Intel was not on that list. Mozilla, Microsoft and Opera Software were some of the early vendors to jump on board, and chip maker Broadcom said its VideoCore IV smartphone processor would provide hardware acceleration for WebM video files.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags chipsGoogleintelGoogle TV

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?