The 47 companies participating in VVC Pool Fostering met last week to discuss the proposals made by candidate facilitators offering to form a pool covering patents essential to the VVC standard. VVC Pool Fostering is an activity sponsored by MC-IF. At their meeting, the participants decided to not to proceed further with one candidate facilitator, taking forward three remaining candidates.
As next steps, the participants in VVC Pool Fostering have developed a set of additional questions addressed to the remaining candidates and called for a second round of presentations to the group during the first week of December. The objective of VVC Pool Fostering is to select, by consensus, a single facilitator that will complete promptly the formation of a pool with a critical mass of VVC-essential patents.
Speaking of the progress of the group, Carter Eltzroth, convenor of VVC Pool Fostering, said, “The number of participants in VVC Pool Fostering continues to grow and we are now at 47 companies, each with a well-founded belief that it holds at least one patent essential to the Versatile Video Coding standard. During the past week we welcomed another participant, making our number 48 participants overall. The pace of our meetings is picking up. I am confident that a single facilitator will be chosen in December or early next year.”
Jud Cary, President of MC-IF, said, “The participants in VVC Pool Fostering, together with future implementers of the VVC standard, are keen to see a one-stop shop for licensing VVC- essential patents. The VVC standard is a significant step forward in video compression technology. A transparent, efficient licensing program, offered by a single patent pool, will help ensure the market success of the VVC standard and its implementations.” Mr Cary is also co-convenor of VVC Pool Fostering.
Acting for one of the VVC companies, Stephan Wenger, Senior Director IP & Standards at Tencent America, said, “The 48 participating companies in VVC Pool Fostering are drawn from throughout the world and represent a number of busines models. They have a variety of intentions on adopting VVC in their respective commercial sectors. I am encouraged by this broad participation and the evident progress that has been made by VVC Pool Fostering. A consensus by the group on a single pool facilitator will be a key early indicator of the near- term market launch of VVC devices and services.” Mr Wenger is also the chair of the IP Ecosystem Working Group within MC-IF.
About VVC Patent Pooling
MC-IF announced its initiative to foster the formation of a pool licensing VVC-essential patents on 22 July 2020. In its press release, it invited those with a good-faith believe that they hold patents (or patent applications) potentially essential to the Versatile Video Coding (VVC) standard to join the effort. A patent pool provides greater market certainty on licensing terms, and will encourage earlier market launch and widespread adoption of VVC technology for the benefit of VVC implementers and consumers of VVC-compliant products. Ideally, the initiative will lead to the competitive selection of a commercial pool facilitator that will complete the formation of, and then administer, a single, voluntary pool covering VVC essential patents.
MC-IF is fostering the formation of a pool covering VVC-essential patents. It is not facilitating or administering a patent pool.
More information about VVC Pool Fostering, including FAQs, can be found at https://www.mc-if.org/fostering. Companies holding VVC-essential patents can find more information by contacting the Convenor, Carter Eltzroth, [email protected].
The Media Coding Industry Forum (MC-IF) is an open industry forum with the purpose of furthering the adoption of MPEG Standards, initially focusing on VVC, by establishing them as well-accepted and widely used standards for the benefit of consumers and industry. Any party that supports MC-IF’s goals is invited to join the Forum. MC-IF addresses the non- technical aspects of deployment of media standards, notably including licensing, by facilitating cross-industry discussion. It provides a hub for information related to implementations, tools, and guidelines for usage of VVC and related standards. To join MC- IF, see www.MC-IF.org.