Better audio experiences around the world

The continued uptake of our 4th generation audio codecs by prominent licensees in 2021 has advanced their further establishment. Indeed, companies all over the world have embraced the Fraunhofer IIS codecs, which improve listening experiences in a huge variety of areas: from 3D soundbars to Bluetooth accessories to smart speakers.

International successes for MPEG-H Audio

VIA Licensing, one of the leading administrators of patent pools, announced the establishment of a patent pool for MPEG-H 3D Audio in July of this year. In addition to Fraunhofer, the well-known innovators Dolby, ETRI, Orange, Royal Philips, Sony Group Corp., VoiceAge and WILUS were all founding members. In the following December, Samsung joined the pool. Thanks to the licensing program, providers can now license essential patents for the MPEG-H 3D Audio standard at fair and appropriate conditions. The patent pool makes it much less complicated to integrate MPEG-H Audio into consumer electronics, paving the way for its widespread use.

In the domain of content creation, insights derived from their real-life use went into the production tools published last year. On top of the release of an optimized version of the MPEG-H Authoring Suite (MAS 4.0), the ADM Info Tool was thoroughly revised and republished as the MPEG-H Info Tool (MHIT). In addition, a collaboration with Fraunhofer IDMT produced the Fraunhofer Immersive Panner, which enables users to create 3D audio productions for live applications with conventional production tools. Meanwhile, a collaboration with the company New Audio Technologies from Hamburg resulted in the Spatial Audio Designer (SAD), which permits the complete production of MPEG-H Audio for broadcast, music and live environments.

MPEG-H Audio has also made great progress internationally as a broadcast audio standard. In March, an MPEG-H Audio training center opened in São Paulo, Brazil, where Latin American professionals can familiarize themselves with the technology. In Brazil, the digital TV infrastructure is currently undergoing a comprehensive upgrade. As the first broadcaster in Latin America, Grupo Rede Amazônica is providing a 24/7 MPEG-H Audio service on one of its terrestrial channels using the ISDB-Tb TV 2.5 standard. As the next step toward TV 3.0, the country’s entire TV infrastructure is to be converted from analog to digital by December 2023.

In December, the Brazilian SBTVD Forum completed the technical evaluation phase for the future Brazilian television standard. In this phase, several proposed technologies were compared. In the area of audio coding, the MPEG-H Audio system fulfilled all criteria of this selection process and was therefore chosen as the sole mandatory audio format for the future terrestrial UHD system in Brazil.


© Fraunhofer IIS, hl-studios

xHE-AAC is preferred codec of international streaming services

Since this year, xHE-AAC can count the industry giants LG Electronics, Netflix and Facebook among its licensees. This means the codec has established itself as one of the technologies of choice for mobile streaming. xHE-AAC enhances the experience of all kinds of content – movies, music, audio books and podcasts – more than any other technology. Since January, a web-based test service is available, with which developers and manufacturers can test their implementations of the xHE-AAC audio codec for conformity with the MPEG standards. Since then, use of the trademark xHE-AAC® is also being licensed for products that pass the test. This lets manufacturers and consumers recognize which products have been tested for interoperability with the expanded functions of the xHE-AAC codec.


Unprecedented clarity and lowest latency:
LC3 / LC3plus

LC3 (Low Complexity Communication Codec) improves the performance of devices with Bluetooth audio support. This year, the codec passed the official qualification process of the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) and is now listed as a qualified and tested component. Manufacturers of products that are based on this profile are spared the trouble of additional codec tests. Thanks to the sister codec LC3plus, which is equipped with numerous additional functions, the high-end manufacturer Bang & Olufsen can now provide its customers with the highest audio quality in its new wireless streaming devices.



© Fraunhofer IIS, hl-studios

EVS: Better call quality in mobile networks

The Enhanced Voice Services (EVS) communication codec improves the robustness and quality of cellphone conversations. Recently, the Groupe Speciale Mobile Association (GSMA) made EVS implementation mandatory in 5G-capable devices in its “IMS Profile for Voice, Video and Messaging over 5GS” (NG.114), so that the technology will now be used consistently in all 5G voice services. Another big step in the continuing spread of the codec is its implementation is its implementation in the VoLTE networks of Airtel India and Vodafone Idea, two of the largest cellphone providers in India. Together, the two network operators have almost 625 million customers1.



Mandy Garcia

Contact Press / Media

Mandy Garcia

Head of Marketing Communications Audio and Media Technologies

Fraunhofer IIS
Am Wolfsmantel 33
91058 Erlangen, Germany

Phone +49 9131 776-6178