VVC Overview

Versatile Video Coding Standard


ITU-T H.266 | MPEG-I - Part 3 (ISO/IEC 23090-3)

H.266/VVC is the most recent video compression technology to be standardized. It has been developed by the Joint Video Experts Team (JVET) of the ITU-T Visual Coding Experts Group (VCEG) and the ISO/IEC Moving Pictures Experts Group (MPEG). JVET was founded as the Joint Video Exploration Team  (on Future Video coding) of ITU-T VCEG and ISO/IEC MPEG in October 2015. After a successful call for proposals [1][2], it transitioned into the Joint Video Experts Team (also abbreviated to JVET) in April 2018 with the task to develop a new video coding standard. The new video coding standard was named Versatile Video Coding (VVC) and has been finalized in July 2020.

The H.266/VVC project timeline can be summarized as follows:

  • Exploration Phase
    October 2015 - October 2017
  • Joint Call for Proposals (CfP)
    October 2017 - April 2018
  • Development Phase
    April 2018 - July 2020
  • Final Standard (Version 1)
    July 2020

VVC is designed from the ground up to be both efficient and versatile to address today's media needs. This includes:

  • 50% bit-rate reduction
    over H.265/HEVC, the predecessor standard;
  • versatility
    by efficient coding of a wide range of video content and applications.

VVC includes from version 1 tools specialized for different kinds of content:

  • video beyond standard- and high-definition
    including high resolution (up to 8K or even larger), high dynamic range (HDR), and wide color gamut;
  • computer generated or screen content
    as occurring in screen sharing and online gaming applications;
  • immersive content
    such as 360-degree video.

An overview of the VVC standardization activity was given at Mile High Video Workshop 2019 (video) and at the ITU Workshop on "The future of media" (slides).

NOTE — More information on H.266/VVC can be found on the VVC support site.

Contributions of the Video Communication and Applications Department

The Video Coding Technologies Group contributed several essential coding tools and technologies to the H.266/VVC standard, as listed below. Some of the contributions were developed in cooperation with the Multimedia Communication Group and the Video Coding Systems Group.

In version 1 of H.266/VVC we contributed:

Administrative Support

The Video Coding Systems and Video Coding Technologies Groups have been involved in the administration of the JVET standardization in three major ways:


  1. J. Pfaff, H. Schwarz, D. Marpe, B. Bross, S. De-Luxán-Hernández, P. Helle, C. R. Helmrich, T. Hinz, W. Q. Lim, J. Ma, T. Nguyen, J. Rasch, M. Schäfer, M. Siekmann, G. Venugopal, A. Wieckowski, M. Winken, and T. Wiegand, “Video Compression Using Generalized Binary Partitioning and Advanced Techniques for Prediction and Transform Coding,” IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems For Video Technology (TCSVT), 2019. DOI: 10.1109/TCSVT.2019.2945918
  2. B. Bross et al., “General Video Coding Technology in Responses to the Joint Call for Proposals on Video Compression with Capability beyond HEVC,” IEEE Trans. on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology (TCSVT), 2019. DOI: 10.1109/TCSVT.2019.2949619
  3. B. Bross, J. Chen, S. Liu, Y.-K. Wang, “Versatile Video Coding (Draft 10),” doc. JVET-S2001  of ITU-T/ISO/IEC Joint Video Exploration Team (JVET), 19th meeting by Teleconference, June 2020
  4. VTM Reference Software