The Joint Video Experts Team – a collaborative team formed by the ITU-T Study Group 16 Video Coding Experts Group and ISO/IEC JTC1 SC29/WG11 (Moving Picture Experts Group, MPEG) – has launched a project to develop a new video coding standard to be known as Versatile Video Coding (VVC).
Video is the main driver of bandwidth use, accounting for over 80 per cent of consumer Internet traffic. The majority of this video is coded using international standards developed in collaboration by ITU-T Study Group 16 and MPEG.
Work on the new VVC standard commenced at a meeting of the Joint Video Experts Team in San Diego, U.S., 10-20 April 2018.
The primary objective of VVC is to provide a significant improvement in compression performance over the existing ‘High Efficiency Video Coding’ standard (HEVC, published as ITU-T H.265 | ISO/IEC 23008-2). VVC will aid the deployment of higher-quality video services and emerging applications such as 360° omnidirectional immersive multimedia and high-dynamic-range (HDR) video.
The development of the VVC standard is expected to be complete before the close of 2020.
The San Diego meeting evaluated responses to a joint Call for Proposals issued by the two bodies. Responses to the call were received from 32 organizations, with some demonstrating compression efficiency gains over HEVC of 40 per cent or more.
The gain was measured in extensive formal subjective tests conducted by independent test labs. Both 360° omnidirectional video and HDR video were tested as well as conventional dynamic range video. Particular effectiveness was shown on ultra-high definition (UHD) video test material.
The results of this very successful call led to creation of a first draft of the VVC standard, a test model for simulation experiments, and a technology benchmark set for the VVC project.
The new standard is expected to enable the delivery of UHD services at bit rates that today are used to carry HDTV. Alternatively, using VVC would enable twice as much video content to be stored on a server or sent through a streaming service.
Learn more about the aims of the VVC project in an ITU interview with Microsoft’s Gary Sullivan, Rapporteur for Visual Coding in ITU-T Study Group 16, at the outset of the project’s exploratory phase in February 2017.