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Nvidia opened early access to its new platform, Maxine AI, which uses neural network based compression to reduce bandwidth consumption on video calls.

Currently, video conference apps like Zoom use popular compression techniques like H264, HEVC etc. to transmit video. While these techniques are amazing by themselves, they are standards laid down to tackle all possible use cases and not just conference calls (think streaming movies on Netflix).

Nvidia has gone a step further and optimised these compression techniques specifically for video calls which are distinctly categorised by a human face and a static background. So it detects your face & transmits only the relevant data.

How much improvement are we talking about?

That's 800x improvement! Of course that won't be true for the entire video & Nvidia claims at least 10 times less data consumed for your existing video calls.

What does this mean for video calls & when will I see a change?

Nvidia is offering access to its platform which will enable apps like Zoom to use Nvidia's compression techniques & reduce the bandwidth usage for video calls. What this effectively means is that you will see much lower lag on video and possibility to have video calls instead of audio-only calls when you have poor connectivity.

When we will see this happen really depends on how fast video conferencing apps adopt this technique, if at all.


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    This is phenomenal. Although no one would have cared to invest as much into compression primarily for video calls. It will be interesting to see if Zoom or someone else adopts it. I doubt Google or Microsoft would use Maxine SDK as is.

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      Looks very promising. Eager to see this in action. The video also shows avatars that you can have on video calls - will be fun.

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        Wow, that could be amazing, I have participated in some training and talks online with more than 20 people there, so the bandwidth with all videos begins to be a problem. 

        Hope to see Zoom implementing those techniques soon!

        (yeah I also have some meets with a lot of friends to have fun, and have issues with video because the number of assistants is not fun :( hahaha )

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          Yes, this will be particularly useful for having video calls with a large number of participants. Plus, they also plan to add a number of cool features that include filtering out common background noise, conversational AI functionality to allow translations in real-time. Super excited about these!

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          When this gets commercialized into video calls, it will accelerate remote work significantly!

          It is an impressive technology and a great idea that allowed it.

          I'm really excited to see this in action!

          P.S. I will post on LinkedIn about it and give you credit for spotting it :-)