Google extends license agreement for AAC codec range with Fraunhofer IIS

Fraunhofer IIS, primary developer of the xHE-AAC audio codec, is pleased to announce the extension of its AAC family software license agreement with Google.

Fraunhofer’s AAC encoder software that supports the AAC-LC, HE-AAC, and xHE-AAC flavors of the open international standard is used by Google to deliver billions of hours of content to consumers worldwide. By extending this fruitful collaboration into the future, users will continue to enjoy uninterrupted streaming with all types of content – such as movies, music, audiobooks, and podcasts.

The latest version of the AAC family, xHE-AAC, offers maximum coding efficiency with a usable bit rate range that spans from 12 kbit/s to 500 kbit/s and above for stereo services. This helps overcome audio bandwidth constraints and thereby facilitates an enhanced, more reliable consumer experience. Such efficiency is particularly crucial in emerging markets where 2G/3G networks still exist in significant numbers and wherever 4G/5G networks are congested. Audio bandwidth saved due to the increased coding efficiency can be used to improve the video quality. Encoder built-in MPEG-D DRC dynamic range control and loudness metadata provide a consistent loudness level and optimal dynamic range for any playback device and environment.

“We greatly value our close collaboration with the YouTube team,” says Marc Gayer, Head of Business Department & Deputy Division Director Audio and Media Technologies at Fraunhofer IIS. “We are looking forward to continuing this success story and helping even further improve the quality and user experience of the service.”