Google open-sourced a new audio codec(coder-decoder) named Lyra. Lyra uses machine learning to enable high-quality voice calls with low bandwidth. Lyra can compress audio down to as little as three kbps, ensuring a sound quality compared to other codecs requiring much greater bandwidth.

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased remote work and telecommuting; thus, data limits are being stretched even in areas with a reliable connection. Therefore, Google is now making Lyra open-source to help make a difference in such kinds of situations.

The Lyra codec is optimized in such a way that it can squeeze recognizable and natural-sounding human speech into the minimum possible space. Lyra is built using an ML model trained on thousands of hours of audio of common people speaking in more than 70 languages and accents. It also supports low-powered devices, including a smartphone that only has 90 milliseconds of latency.



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