CES 2014 kicks off January 7, and YouTube is expected to show off the ability to stream 4K video by way of the latest VP9 codec.
Developed by Google, and open source for anyone to develop for, VP9 replaces the VP8 codec, and is an alternative to the H.265 codec.
To help demo the 4k streaming capability at CES, Panasonic, Sony and LG have partnered with YouTube.
However, more companies such as Toshiba, Samsung, Sharp and Intel have pledged to support VP9.
Of course, YouTube makes it clear that VP9 is not the only codec it plans on supporting 4k content. This certainly isn’t a war of the video codecs,” Francisco Varela, global director of platform partnerships at YouTube said in an interview. He also notes that it is possible for YouTube to support H.265 video as well.
Similar to YouTube, Google+ currently uses the previous generation VP8 codec to make HD Hangouts possible.
YouTube says it expects VP9 codec support to roll out gradually, first hitting mobile devices and PCs, followed by TVs closer to 2015.