Project Caviar

Google is in talks with manufacturers seeking royalty-free alternatives to Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. TV manufacturers must currently pay licensing fees ranging from $2.00-$3.00 per device for Dolby Vision. Meanwhile, Samsung’s own alternative to Dolby Vision, HDR10+, has not gained much traction.

In addition to greater bit depth (12 bits vs. 10 bits), higher brightness levels (10,000 nits vs. 1,000 nits), dynamic metadata vs. static metadata and the ability to painlessly generate an SDR version, Dolby Vision distinguishes itself from HDR10 by offering ICtCp, a replacement for Y’CbCr designed expressly for HDR that yields more faithful color reproduction.

While nothing prevents HDR10 from being distributed using ICtCp, to the best of our knowledge, most broadcasters and video sharing platforms employ Y’CbCr. Google’s help page for YouTube HDR upload requirements specifies rec.2020 non-constant luminance, i.e. Y’CbCr, while Dolby considers ICtCp a core feature of their technology and a handful of streaming networks like Netflix use ICtCp.


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