Fraunhofer IIS licenses LC3 audio codec software to Microsoft – Fraunhofer Audio Blog
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Fraunhofer IIS licenses LC3 audio codec software to Microsoft

Fraunhofer IIS is pleased to announce the licensing of its LC3 software implementation to Microsoft Corp.

LC3 (Low Complexity Communication Codec) is the audio codec for Bluetooth LE Audio, a new audio architecture designed to boost the performance of Bluetooth Audio – for voice calls as well as for media playback including music.

The codec is a joint development by Fraunhofer IIS and Ericsson and provides high-quality speech and audio, even at low data rates, overcoming essential shortcomings in today’s wireless communication platforms. A reduction of the required bit rate by roughly 50 percent compared to the legacy SBC codec facilitates low-energy audio services – making it possible either to extend products’ battery life or to create smaller devices. The codec’s complexity meets the requirements of wireless communication platforms and operates at low latency and low memory footprint. Due to the flexible codec design, applications are not limited to voice services but can be extended to high resolution music streaming when implementing the codec’s LC3plus superset.

“We are very pleased that Microsoft has decided to license our LC3 implementation. The amount of requests we receive for LC3 and its superset LC3plus prove that industry demand for this low-complexity, low-energy and optimized audio quality solution is overwhelming, even before final adoption by Bluetooth SIG,” said Manfred Lutzky, head of the Audio for Communications department at Fraunhofer IIS.

Referring to the LC3 codec being easy to implement, Rico Malvar, Distinguished Engineer at Microsoft, said: “LC3 offers greater simplicity in terms of computation, memory buffers, data structure management, etc. than significantly more complex codecs such as MP3.”

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