Friday, November 19, 2010

Texai Remote Presence System Using VP8 Video

Guest blogger Josh Tyler is a member of the Texai team at Willow Garage.

Willow Garage is busy building the next version of its Texai remote presence platform with VP8, the video codec used in WebM.

In short, Texai is a two-way videoconferencing app on a tele-operated robotic platform (for more details, see the piece about Texai in the New York Times). Video and audio quality are critical to providing the best user experience on Texai. We've evaluated several video codecs and found VP8's image quality, low latency and tolerance to packet loss far better than anything else we tested.

The video below shows VP8 running on one of our systems.

(If you have a WebM-enabled browser and are enrolled in the YouTube HTML5 beta the video will play in WebM HTML5, otherwise it will play in Flash Player.)

We're also looking for help! If you're interested in helping us create an incredible, high-fidelity user experience, either by joining our team, partnering on development, or by being added to our early customer interest list, please email us at

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

WebM Video Codec in Skype 5.0 Group Video

Our friends at Skype recently released Skype 5.0 for Windows and Mac, which features a beta group video feature using VP8, the video codec in WebM. In the first half of 2010, approximately 40% of Skype-to-Skype calls were video calls and we’re excited that in the future many of those calls will be made using VP8.

To check out the new group video feature, simply download the Skype Software.

Note: For group video to work, everyone on the call needs the new Skype for Windows or Mac, a webcam and a broadband connection.

For more info about Skype group video, visit the Skype website.