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MP3 Developers End Licensing and Effectively Kill the Format

     
4:56 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I don't doubt it'll hang on and on for a long time yet, but, the developers have pulled the plug on the licensing program for the MP3 format.

The developer of the format announced this week that it has officially terminated its licensing program. MP3 Developers End Licensing and Effectively Kill the Format [gizmodo.com]
Although there are more efficient audio codecs with advanced features available today, mp3 is still very popular amongst consumers. However, most state-of-the-art media services such as streaming or TV and radio broadcasting use modern ISO-MPEG codecs such as the AAC family or in the future MPEG-H. Those can deliver more features and a higher audio quality at much lower bitrates compared to mp3.
5:42 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The format is not dead, it is just that the last of the even remotely credible patents expired last month so there is no reason to pay a license fee. MP3 is now an open format.

Misleading headline.
6:42 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The MP3 Is About As 'Dead' As Pepe The Frog [techdirt.com]
Most importantly, despite what many people have reported, this does not mean the death of the MP3. Of course, Fraunhofer's statement didn't contradict any of these things, it just omitted them all and left people with the implication that this move ensured the decline and eventual death of the format -- when in fact it likely means the exact opposite.
6:55 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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There's a lot of software out there that wraps many audio formats in mp3 which will continue to create these files for years.

I was never a fan. Awful compression ratio; clipped the highs & lows... Also, it is very easy to put a trojan in an mp3 wrapper and go undetected into the end user's machine.

I make them for my clients in the studio because it's easy and well supported but I have better choices.
6:55 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yeah, as i said, it'll be around for a long while yet, and hopefully, it'll remain supported as an open source format.

It could use a better title.
7:19 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The death of a patent is the future for open competition. That's the difference between patents and copyrights and how either eventually become public domain. Trademarks are a completely different kind of intellectual properties protection. Trademarks can be forever, but the other two have fixed periods of exclusivity before falling into the public domain.
9:44 pm on May 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I was on the horn with a head tech for a chain of music studios this morning, He was aware of the, now unrestricted, mp3 story. He didn't even think it was newsworthy.

Like many in the industry, we never cared about patents anyway, we just used the files. Probably not ethical, but that's what most everyone did. Kinda like gif files; of course these are now making a meager attempt at controlling their use by the larger companies, but IMO the cat's out of the bag.