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Steve Jobs says no to Google's VP8 WebM codec - Page 3

post #81 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Now, if Google wants to INDEMNIFY users against patent suits, that would be a different matter -but they haven't offered to do that. I wonder why.

A good point.

If Google is so sure that nobody will have to pay patent royalties for the technologies used in VP8, then it needs to back it up with legal protection. This is not unprecedented and several software companies do offer varying levels of indemnity to their customers. Certainly Google has the pockets to offer such protection unless its assurances are just hot air.
post #82 of 100
The way I see it, this announcement is just another example of Google's recently adopted "monkey see, monkey do" business philosophy. I mean, at this point it's becoming downright blatant...

A top Google exec sits on Apple's board for a few years. Shortly before leaving Google embarks on a path of "competitive activities" that mimic Apple's innovative strategies across the board. Aside from a search engine and a few online applications like Google Maps, what has Google done in the past couple of years that Apple hasn't already done first?

In no particular order:

Apple has a browser, so Google makes a browser.

Apple has its OS, and Google has been trying to establish one too.

Apple creates a mobile OS, so Google makes one too.

Apple releases a mobile phone, so Google releases one.

Apple releases a touch-tablet, so Google announces one too.

Apple promotes/supports a video codec, so Google announces one.


And the list goes on...

The timing of the Google announcements are what make them so obvious. It doesn't look at all like a natural, organic direction for the company when they consistently announce "like" products right on the heels of Apple's doing so. Instead it appears a rather blatant form of imitation.

I guess Apple should be flattered.
post #83 of 100
You want to be taken as a knowledgeable figure and then make very thin statements like this. H.264 is far more flexible and has more profiles and variants than WebM is able to offer. WebM will likely be proved to be on par with Baseline H.264.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Asherian View Post

h264 is of slightly superior quality to WebM, but it is expensive with uncertain royalties in 2016.
post #84 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

The timing of the Google announcements are what make them so obvious. It doesn't look at all like a natural, organic direction for the company when they consistently announce "like" products right on the heels of Apple's doing so. Instead it appears a rather blatant form of imitation.

It's because of how Google, and Microsoft before them, view their position in the world, which guides their behavior. One of the most important things Steve Jobs ever said was, quoting from memory, "For Apple to succeed, Microsoft doesn't have to fail." More than anything, this highlights the differences in the approach to business at Apple, and the way Microsoft, and now Google, do business. For them, they see the success of other companies coming at their expense. So, in Google's view, for them to succeed, they must prevent others from succeeding.

It's essentially a destructive philosophy, where much of your energy goes into preventing the success of others, at any cost, to them, to yourself, to consumers. Compare this to Apple's philosophy, as expressed by Jobs, where the goal is to succeed through creation, and you'll understand the fundamental differences between Google and Apple as companies.
post #85 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

The way I see it, this announcement is just another example of Google's recently adopted "monkey see, monkey do" business philosophy.

It worked for Microsoft!
post #86 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asherian View Post

I'm sorry, but what?

Microsoft said IE will support it in that it'll play videos in IE as long as the codec is installed on the system. They're not shipping IE with support but it'll be a one-time one-click setup thing to install a codec to play it on the system.

Of course the codec has HD capability. In fact, the very first thing Google did with WebM was convert all HD YouTube videos to HD WebM. If you download a WebM capable browser like the latest Firefox WebM builds and you're in the YouTube HTML5 beta, you are looking at HD WebM.

To the author of the article:
The slant in this news story, and many on this site, is astonishing. Why do people feel the need to defend Apple in everything? They're a business with their own vested interests, they're in this to make money and protect their interest...not to be a humanitarian company. Try being more being more objective. This site reads like a state newspaper in China or Pravda. Apple's side of the story is presented in detail, then a token reference to the other side is made followed by a slew of opinions stated as fact to discredit them. You guys can do better.

Totally Agree
post #87 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

It's because of how Google, and Microsoft before them, view their position in the world, which guides their behavior. One of the most important things Steve Jobs ever said was, quoting from memory, "For Apple to succeed, Microsoft doesn't have to fail." More than anything, this highlights the differences in the approach to business at Apple, and the way Microsoft, and now Google, do business. For them, they see the success of other companies coming at their expense. So, in Google's view, for them to succeed, they must prevent others from succeeding.

It's essentially a destructive philosophy, where much of your energy goes into preventing the success of others, at any cost, to them, to yourself, to consumers. Compare this to Apple's philosophy, as expressed by Jobs, where the goal is to succeed through creation, and you'll understand the fundamental differences between Google and Apple as companies.

Could not agree more.
post #88 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

The problem is that WebM's license doesn't give them the right to give a license to patents they don't own. If patent holders decide that this codec infringes their patents, they can sue regardless of what Google says.

They have said, though, that if anybody does file a patent infringement suit (against Google or any 3rd party using VP8) for infringing on any patent related to VP8, then that act automatically triggers Google to revoke that litigant's license for any Google-owned patents also related to VP8.

An interesting question, then, is this: Does Google's patent portfolio include any patents that could reasonably be considered relevant to both VP8 and H.264? If so, then any attempt to shut down VP8 could have the unintended side effect of cancelling any such patent licenses -- thus effectively revoking the litigant's permission to use either VP8 or H.264.
post #89 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

In reply to a email asking his thoughts on Google's announcement of the royalty-free WebM video codec...

snip

... patent attacks.


*head explodes*
post #90 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by junkie View Post

Any idea of how much the royalty stream is per year?

from what I understand not much. apparently they are waiving the fees until 2016 for all but perhaps the largest of companies
post #91 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

from what I understand not much. apparently they are waiving the fees until 2016 for all but perhaps the largest of companies

They charge two separate sets of royalties:
1) One royalty for vendors of software and hardware devices that take raw, uncompressed video and convert it into H.264 compressed video, and vice versa, takes compressed H.264 video and converts it into raw, uncompressed video, with the intention of the compressed video being used purely for private, personal uses. These royalties are intended to be borne solely by the software and hardware vendors themselves. All vendors of software or hardware that implements the H.264 codec (encoder or decoder) must pay royalties, no matter how large or small they may be.

2) One royalty for any content provider who makes use of the codec to generate H.264-encoded video for any non-private uses, such as distribution on the Internet, broadcast, physical media, etc. These royalties are intended to be borne by the actual content distributors/broadcasters themselves, and are not covered by the hardware or software vendors' existing licenses.

Category (2) is further subdivided into several different categories of uses: (a) Cases where the end user directly pays for the ability to view videos either on a pay-per-title basis or a subscription basis, and (b) cases where the end user doesn't directly pay for the video (but the content provider may or may not receive other indirect forms of remuneration, eg through advertising revenue).

Category (2a) does not require content distributors to charge royalties if the end user pays for content on a title-by-title basis and the title is shorter than 12 minutes in length. For videos of 12 minutes or greater, as well as all titles obtained under a subscription basis, the royalty varies depending on the price paid and the number of subscribers/copies purchased.

Category (2b) is further subdivided into two separate categories: (i) Distribution over the Internet, and (ii) all other forms of distribution.

Royalties for category (2bii) varies, depending on the number of encoding devices that were used to create the sum total of all content distributed under the category.

Category (2bi) does not require the content distributor to pay royalty fees until at least 2016.

In total, the only entities that are not required to pay royalties are content distributors who sell content of less than 12 minutes duration on a title-by-title basis, and content distributors who distribute their titles over the internet for no direct fee. All other content distributors are required to pay royalties. Every hardware and software vendor who implements H.264 must pay royalties.
post #92 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

In a few years is where this VP8 gets interesting. It will have a chance to get mature, to get all the number crinkles ironed out and potentially give MPEG-LA a scare that makes H.264 cost free for all browsers and sites that wish to use it. This is what I think is Google's play here. They want H.264 to become free and are using a slightly inferior free codec to force their hand. If not, then they'll have codec that is 6 years more mature to fallback back on. it's a win-win situation for them.


.

From everything I have seen, this seems to be the most plausible explanation for Google's actions. It is good to know that they are looking ahead, and eliminating problems before they have a chance to even happen. Their strategic thinking should be applauded. And we will all benefit if their strategy works.
post #93 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

I think Apple cares more about quality (for the end user and for their own artistic integrity) than the "open" ideology.

If Steve Jobs forwards an article about the poor quality of something, there is no reason not to take him at face value.

I think that Steve Jobs cares about maximizing total profits. If that can be accomplished with quality, so be it. If and "open ideology" will maximize profit, then that ideology will be adopted.

And if Steve makes public statements, it is intended to increase Apple's total profits.

Don't confuse the means with the end.
post #94 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


The problem is that WebM's license doesn't give them the right to give a license to patents they don't own. If patent holders decide that this codec infringes their patents, they can sue regardless of what Google says.

Now, if Google wants to INDEMNIFY users against patent suits, that would be a different matter -but they haven't offered to do that. I wonder why.


You don't wonder why. You KNOW why.
post #95 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by deurbroucq View Post

A good point.

If Google is so sure that nobody will have to pay patent royalties for the technologies used in VP8, then it needs to back it up with legal protection. This is not unprecedented and several software companies do offer varying levels of indemnity to their customers. Certainly Google has the pockets to offer such protection unless its assurances are just hot air.



It is not a good point. First of all, it doesn't take into account the minuscule likelihood that any end user would be sued for patent infringement. And even worse, leaving the likelihood aside, it doesn't explain how such suits would even be possible.
post #96 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

It's essentially a destructive philosophy, where much of your energy goes into preventing the success of others, at any cost, to them, to yourself, to consumers. Compare this to Apple's philosophy, as expressed by Jobs, where the goal is to succeed through creation, and you'll understand the fundamental differences between Google and Apple as companies.

I think that your analysis is flawed, as it rests on your guesses about how multinational companies "see themselves". I think your guesses in turn rest on an untested and unjustified assumption: That companies are motivated by how they "see themselves".

And even if what you said were true, I do no such analysis prior to using a product. Whether a company wants to destroy another, like Apple wants to do to Adobe, is not relevant when I choose a product.

So even if your analysis had a leg to stand on, which it doesn't, it would be irrelevant.
post #97 of 100
[QUOTE=lfmorrison;1636979
An interesting question, then, is this: Does Google's patent portfolio include any patents that could reasonably be considered relevant to both VP8 and H.264? If so, then any attempt to shut down VP8 could have the unintended side effect of cancelling any such patent licenses -- thus effectively revoking the litigant's permission to use either VP8 or H.264.[/QUOTE]

I need to hear Ananomouse explain this. It seems to be an explanation for the lack of an indemnity clause. There's likely any number of other, better explanations too.

But I want to hear how Google won't indemnify end users because of their view that end users are likely to be sued for patent infringement.
post #98 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevie View Post

It is not a good point. First of all, it doesn't take into account the minuscule likelihood that any end user would be sued for patent infringement. And even worse, leaving the likelihood aside, it doesn't explain how such suits would even be possible.

It's really quite simple. Let's say that someone uses VP8 - either as a developer or as a user - and that someone who owns a relevant patent doesn't like it, so they sue (granted, this is far likelier to involve a developer than an end user, but it could happen either way).

Google could agree in advance that if anyone is ever sued for use of VP8 that Google will pay their legal expenses to defend them and any penalties that might be incurred. Others have done it. Obviously, Google doesn't believe it's worth doing that - because the risks are too high.

It's really amazing how many people have fallen for the 'Google is God's gift to computing' nonsense. Google has shown that their only goal is controlling every element of your online life - and probably even more than that. You can't go anywhere on the Internet without Google tracking you and selling your private information. Google has taken the position that copyright laws don't apply to them and that they should be able to sell copyrighted works without permission of the copyright holder. They know more about you than the US government does (the US government doesn't have pictures of your home nor track your browsing history, for examle) and have perhaps the worst privacy rules in the business. And that's even if you don't use their products. Then there's the fact that if you want a good page rank for your business, you have to pay Google bribes to get listed anywhere in the top 10 pages.
http://www.google-watch.org/

Apple, OTOH, has specifically stated that they will not sell advertisers private information about users. Furthermore, you can quite simply stay out of Apple's databases by not buying their products.

Anyone putting their trust in Google is making a HUGE mistake.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
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"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
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post #99 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevie View Post

It is not a good point. First of all, it doesn't take into account the minuscule likelihood that any end user would be sued for patent infringement. And even worse, leaving the likelihood aside, it doesn't explain how such suits would even be possible.

I agree it would be very unlikely suits would be filed against individual end users of any product using VP8. But what about a developer of a successful application that leverages VP8? Such a developer would be a tempting target.

At my company, a licensor's commitment to indemnify and bear the risks can factor into technology decisions during the development process.
post #100 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevie View Post

I think that your analysis is flawed, as it rests on your guesses about how multinational companies "see themselves". I think your guesses in turn rest on an untested and unjustified assumption: That companies are motivated by how they "see themselves".

And even if what you said were true, I do no such analysis prior to using a product. Whether a company wants to destroy another, like Apple wants to do to Adobe, is not relevant when I choose a product.

So even if your analysis had a leg to stand on, which it doesn't, it would be irrelevant.

I think that your analysis is flawed, as it rest on guesses about what my analysis is based on. It's got nothing to do with how they see themselves, it's all about how they behave, which we can all see.

And, it's only irrelevant if you a) don't base decisions on any sort of values and b) view everything as disconnected.
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