Media Lab is an active contributor to media standards for better compression performance and perceptual quality for standards such as Versatile Video Coding (VVC), Essential Video Coding (EVC), AOMedia Video (AV1 and AV2), and Audio and Video Coding Standard Workgroup of China (AVS, also known as IEEE1857), Point Cloud Compression (PCC), Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR).
Versatile Video Coding (VVC/H.266) is an international video compression standard finalized in July 2020 and developed by the Joint Video Experts Team (JVET) of ISO/IEC MPEG and the ITU-T VCEG. Compared to its predecessor, High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC/H.265), VVC provides the same visual quality at half the bitrate of HEVC. Tencent Media Lab is a significant contributer to the VVC/H.266 standard and achieved more than 100 technical adoptions into the standard. Moreover, Tencent Media Lab General Manager and Tencent Distinguished Scientist, Dr. Shan Liu, is a co-editor of the VVC/H.266 standard specification.
Essential Video Coding (MPEG-5 EVC) is a video coding standard finalized in April 2020 and designed to be a license-friendly and higher efficiency alternative to the H.264 and H.265 standards. The EVC standard consists of a royalty-free subset and individually switchable royalty-bearing enhancements. With the extensive enhancement toolset, the coding efficiency of EVC is significantly higher than that of H.265. Tencent Media Lab's contribution to the EVC standard is screen content coding (SCC) technology for higher compression performance of videos containing graphics, text, or animation.
The Alliance for Open Media (AOMedia) is a non-profit industry consortium developing open-source and royalty-free technologies related to multimedia communication and distribution. Tencent Media Lab joined AOMedia as a founding member in October 2019. The first video standard published by AOMedia is AOMedia Video 1 (AV1). To pursue higher coding efficiency, in 2019, AOMedia began planning the development of video coding technologies beyond AV1, namely AOMedia Video 2 (AV2). Tencent Media Lab is an active contributor to the ongoing planning of AV2 development and technical exploration, such as contributing technical proposals, defining common test conditions (CTC), incubator subgroup coordination, and software coordination.
AVS (short for Audio and Video Coding Standard Workgroup of China) was established in June 2002 and has developed a series of successful video coding standards. The first standard, AVS1, has comparable encoding performance to the H.264/AVC standard. The AVS2 standard soon followed with comparable performance to the H.265/HEVC standard. AVS3 development is ongoing and has reportedly achieved about 30% bitrate reduction when compared to AVS2. Tencent Media Lab actively participates in AVS2 and AVS3 development and is the chair for screen content coding activities. Media Lab's own TPG image file format is included in the AVS2 standard and its screen content coding technologies have been adopted into AVS3 v2.
A point cloud is a set of 3D points with geometry and attribute information to represent 3D objects or environments. MPEG has established a subgroup to work on two flavors of point cloud compression, V-PCC and G-PCC. V-PCC converts a dense 3D point cloud into a 2D video that could be compressed with existing video codecs. G-PCC directly compresses the 3D geometry and associated attributes. The V-PCC standard was finalized in July 2020 while the G-PCC standard was finalized in October 2020. Tencent Media Lab is actively participating in both V-PCC and G-PCC standards and serves as coordinator of multiple exploration experiments (EE) and core experiments (CE) and as editor of the conformance test work in G-PCC.
AVS (short for Audio and Video Coding Standard Workgroup of China) has established a subgroup, AVS-PCC, to work on the standardization of point cloud compression similar to MPEG G-PCC standard, which directly codes the 3D geometry and associated attributes. Tencent Media Lab is leading this standardization effort by serving as the subgroup co-chair, the standard editor, and the reference software coordinator.
Media Lab is active in the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) which is a standards organization for the Internet and is responsible for the technical standards that comprise the Internet protocol suite. Tencent is also a participant and contributor in the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) which is chartered with the development of next-generation mobile networks. Tencent is also a contributor to MPEG Systems which creates the standards that allow for storage, streaming, and network-based processing of media streams.
In MPEG systems, Tencent Media Lab's focus lies on the continuous development of the Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (DASH), and on the MPEG Network-Based Media Processing (NBMP) standards. Tencent Media Lab also contributed to other MPEG system standards including the ISO File Format (aka .mp4), the MPEG Omnidirectional Media Format, and the MPEG Common Media Format. DASH enables Over-the-Top streaming and is in common use in billions of devices. Dr. Sodagar has been the MPEG DASH subgroup chair in MPEG since the start of DASH standardization in 2009, and also serves as the editor of the NBMP specification, the co-editor of CMAF.
The mission of the IETF (http://www.ietf.org) is to make the Internet work better by producing high quality, relevant technical documents that influence the way people design, use, and manage the Internet. IETF standards also form the backbone of modern telephony and mobile/3G/4G/5G networks. Standards produced by the IETF and published in the RFC series include IP, TCP, UDP, and HTTP. Tencent Media Lab participates in subgroups with a focus on media coding and transport, including AVT, CELLAR, QUIC, and MOPS. Dr. Wenger also holds the position of an IETF Trustee, and Mr. Dawkins serves as co-chair of the CELLAR working group.
3GPP is, at present, the dominant standardization organization for the fifth-generation cellular network technology (5G). Tencent Media Lab participates primarily in the System Architecture groups, namely in SA plenary and in the technical working groups discussing architecture (SA2), codecs (SA4), and mission-critical applications (SA6). Tencent Media Lab also follow other working groups including certain Core Technology (CT) working groups including CT4. One important aspect of Tencent Media Lab's involvement in the standards world is our cross SDO competence, that allows us to benefit from synergy effects. As an example, Mr. Teniou is the vice chair of SA4 and also chairs SA4's video coding related activities. Tencent Media Lab personnel also serves as editors and holds Rapporteur positions.
Tencent Media Lab realizes the increasing value and activity in vertical standardization, and invests into those efforts. For example, Tencent Media Lab contribute to numerous activities involving media in automotive applications, such as the ITU-T Focus Group on Vehicular Multimedia, or the ISO Activity Group on Autonomous and Data Rich Vehicles. As the final example, we participate in cross-organizational activities such as, for example, the remote identification work for unmanned aircraft that's going on in all 3GPP, IETF, ASTM, ICAO, FAA, and several other organizations.
Artificial Intelligence has been actively used in all computer science related areas, like broadcasting, gaming, conferencing, E-commerce, healthcare, autonomous driving, etc. Media Lab is a key contributor to major AI-related standardization activities such as Neural Network Compression (NNR), Video Coding for Machine (VCM), and AI Healthcare, Media Lab is also actively involved in deploying AI-related standards to products including conferencing, communication and gaming.
Compressed representation of neural network plays an essential role in the deployment of neural networks especially on devices with limited resources, such as mobile phone and IOT devices. Both MPEG NNR working group from ISO/ITU, AITISA NNR working group from China and DCSC AIM working group from IEEE are developing advanced model compression technologies that result in efficient compressing of neural networks size as well as efficient accelerating of neural network inference speed. Tencent Media Lab is an active contributor in developing both the International and National NNR standards where we hold a co-chair position of the MPEG NNR working group.
The massive amount of video streaming generated everyday poses great challenges in compression, transmission, and analytics. It remains an open problem on how to perform efficient feature compression that meets the different perception requirements of both human and machine in various computer vision tasks, ranging from detection and recognition to restoration and visual quality enhancement. The MPEG VCM working group from ISO/ITU and the DCM working group from China are developing advanced feature compression technologies, which extract compact representations for both visual features and videos as bridges to connect machine vision and human vision tasks. Tencent Media Lab is an active contributor in developing both International VCM and National DCM standards where we hold a co-chair position of the MPEG VCM working group.
Media Lab participates in a number of industry consortia. These associations focus on the promotion of standards in which development Tencent also actively participates in. Media Lab personnel serves on the BoD and chairs working groups in these consortia. Tencent additionally monitors many other industry consortia with the intention of joining and influencing should a business need arise.
The Media Coding Industry Forum (MC-IF, www.mc-if.org) is chartered to further the adoption of MPEG Standards. It initially focuses on H.266/VVC, by establishing them as well-accepted and widely used standards for the benefit of consumers and industry. Tencent Media Lab was a founding organization of this MC-IF and Dr. Wenger sits on its Board of Directors and chairs the IP Ecosystem working group. One current key project of MC-IF is the fostering of a single patent pool for H.266/VVC.
The DASH Industry Forum (DASH-IF) is an industry forum chartered to foster the deployment of MPEG-DASH standard. DASH-IF currently has 80 member companies and since 2012 has developed several implementation guidelines and specifications on DASH deployment, content protection exchange format for server-side encryption services, extensive test vector database, and conformance tools for on-demand and live content, DASH live streaming simulator, packaging tools, and test platforms, dash.js open-source client, and several white papers. DASH-IF collaborates closely with MPEG on the DASH spec developments as well as with other consortia. Dr. Sodagar is DASH-IF President and Chairman of Board.
8K Association is chartered to address the concerns of the 8K ecosystem. The missions of 8K Association are promoting 8K TVs and 8K Content to consumers and professionals, developing technical requirements and specification for 8K visual quality over 5G, and facilitating communication within 8K and 5G ecosystem for commercialization. Tencent Media Lab participates as a Principal member with a Board of Director (BoD) seat.