Patent Snafus Could Delay New Video Codec reports that the H.265 High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) standard is about to be ratified, promising a new generation of higher resolution and more compact digital video products. The bad news is chip makers are afraid to design products using it.

Vendors may have filed as many as 500 patents relating to the H.265 HEVC technology. But so far just who owns what and how much they expect in royalties is unclear.

The current video codec, H.264, has been the basis of digital video products such as cameraphones and digital video recorders for eight years. Thanks to a patent pool created by the MPEG Licensing Authority, the royalty rate was a flat 25 cents per chip, capped at about $12 million per vendor.


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