[theora] Google is acquiring On2

xiphmont at xiph.org xiphmont at xiph.org
Wed Aug 5 11:26:47 PDT 2009

On Wed, Aug 5, 2009 at 2:18 PM, Lino
Mastrodomenico<l.mastrodomenico at gmail.com> wrote:
> FYI, Google is acquiring On2:
> <http://www.betanews.com/article/Future-of-open-Web-video-may-change-with-Google-acquisition-of-On2/1249481107>
> Also on Slashdot:
> <http://tech.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=09/08/05/1742249>
> Anyone knows what, if anything, this means for Theora, open video
> and/or the Xiph.Org Foundation?

It's a a kinda obvious move for Google to make, though they did a
great job of not telegraphing the move.  Practically everyone
involved, including folks close to Google and On2, were surprised by
the announcement.  So we don't know much more than you.

Given that Google hasn't said anything beyond 'YOINK!' there's no way
to say what it means for Xiph/Theora (or more importantly, FOSS codecs
in general).  It could be great news, we don't know yet.  The only
thing we can say is that it is possibly not good news for h264.

Time will tell.

> Wild speculation: considering that they complained about the
> bitrate/quality of Theora for Youtube and they are supposed to be "not
> evil", maybe Google wants to free one of the new On2 codecs?

That's one of the obvious possibilities.  We don't know.  They'll say
in good time.


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