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DVD Forum Approves WMVHD VC-9 CODEC for HD-DVD

by June 23, 2004

Microsoft has come a long way from its announcement at CES 2004 that it had entered the foray of high-definition DVD. This week the company won a very crucial vote when the Steering Committee for the DVD Forum DID NOT APPROVE a resolution that would retain the current "provisional" approval of HD-DVD CODECs until Windows Media Player VC-9 produced licensing terms with the same level of information as that of AVC/H.264. In a sense, this is a victory by way of voting to proceed with adding VC-9 as a fully adopted CODEC and removing the "provisional" status of the composite CODECs. Microsoft's entry into licensing its technology is an uncharacteristic and big move for them and seems to have scored a win in this latest meeting.

Below are the actual resolutions and the votes as given by the DVD Forum. Resolution #11 is the vote that adopted Micorsoft's Windows Media Player VC-9 CODEC (WMVHD) officially into the HD-DVD spec.

No. Voting Subject Result
1 Authorization for Forum Counsel to File Notice Under New U.S. Law, Entitled Standards Development Organization Act approved
2 Draft minutes of the last Steering Committee (Feb/25-26/2004) approved
3 New PR activity rule proposed by Chair and Vice chiars. "After the SC, the results will be publicized by using the general area of DVD Forum website ASAP. The results will only be publicized at this stage by indicating what items were voted upon and the results (approved or not approved). The minutes will be posted on the general area of the DVD Forum website after the minutes are confirmed by the SC members." approved

New Guideline and recommendation for advance notice of steering committee materials proposed by Chair and Vice chairs (to be posted on Forum website for Forum members).

< Guideline and Recommendation >
Recommendation: Any items, reports, etc to be discussed at next Steering Committee meeting to be sent to Chair Company two weeks prior to next SC meeting.
Recommendation: Draft agenda and proposed resolutions plus all associated materials, (TCG reports etc) to be sent electronically to SC members 10 days prior to next Steering committee meeting by the Chair Company.
It will be recommended that all report from other group are not required to explain all of the description on the material but the point on the material should be clearly and easily explained.

5 Proposed amendment to DVD Forum charter 8(5)(a) and 9(5). not approved
6 Allowing 20 SC members to participate in FLAH, which will be designated a committee. The new committee will recommend a new name to the SC and serve in an advisory capacity with respect to format/logo issues. approved
7 Version up to 2.1 information for DVD-R for General approved
8 2X-SPEED DVD-R Optional Specifications Revision 4.0 approved
9 HD DVD-ROM Physical Specifications ver.1.0 approved
10 Version up of DVD Multi specification (version 1.1) and its posting on the DVD FLLC web site approved
11 Motion to retain the provisional approval of the CODECs until the level of information concerning the licensing terms for VC-9 is the same as the level of information concerning the licensing terms for AVC/H.264 not approved
12 Audio Codec (HE-AAC) for the mandatory audio codec of DVD-Audio ROM-Zone approved
13 PCC Chair: Hitachi approved
14 Amendment of Article 12. (2) of the Forum Charter approved
15 DVD Format/Logo License Agreement to be applied from January 1, 2005 approved

We'll try to keep you informed on this as the format, players and software matures. The road is not clear, but it may be swift depending upon the positions taken by the Blu-Ray crowd and the number of manufacturing lines that are set up in coordination with studios willing to produce the software for these high-definition DVD formats.

About the author:
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Clint Deboer was terminated from Audioholics for misconduct on April 4th, 2014. He no longer represents Audioholics in any fashion.

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