MP3, a word that has become synonymous with audio files, has become obsolete. The Fraunhofer Institute of Integrated Circuits that created the music format has terminated its licensing programme for certain MP3-related patents.
The move means that there will be no more development or support for this format. With its wide use, especially the innumerable audio files stored digitally, it’s likely to still be around for a while yet.
Developed in the 1980s and 1990s, MP3 was popularised by the Apple iPod in 2001. It took up just 10 percent of file size, a massive advantage in the days when devices were sold in MB rather than GB.