The developer of digital audio coding format MP3 has officially announced the end of its licensing program which would mean the death of this format very soon.
MP3 was embraced by consumers in the last couple of decades and has been widely used in various audio-related gadgets. It was a popular choice for consumers to easily download light weight music files but now more sophisticated audio coding formats are prevalent. The Advanced Audio Coding format partly formed by the developers of MP3 is becoming a standard now.
Fraunhofer Institute is claiming the right to license MP3 patents to software developers who want to develop custom software for selling encoders and decoders. Their statement said,
“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.”
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The announcement doesn’t mean that the format will be dead and gone instantly but it is expected that it will stay for the while before being vanished from the software already using it. Online streaming websites are one of the biggest cause of the death of this format as these websites streamed very high-quality audio files and MP3 low-quality sound seemed incomparable against them.
In Pakistan, MP3 still remains the most popular audio coding format for consumers as most of the audio content downloaded from the Internet is available in MP3. Additionally, due to its small size and compatibility with all mainstream audio software, this is the format of choice.