We give a brief tour of the emerging joint ITU-T/H.264 | ISO/IEC MPEG-4, Part 10 ("AVC") video coding standard. Like its predecessors within ITU-T Recommendations, the draft H.264 standard was originally intended for videoconferencing applications; however, its superior performance over other contenders at a variety of rates and resolutions has led to its adoption by MPEG as the next generation video codec, MPEG-4, Part 10 (dubbed Advanced Video Codec - AVC). This powerful new codec design trades backward compatibility and increased encoder complexity for forward-looking performance and scope of applications. In this paper, we give a status report on this emerging standard, review elements of its current design, and provide some comparisons with the existing standards, MPEG-2, H.263, and MPEG-4 Advanced Simple Profile. Our analysis indicates that the draft H.264 standard offers compelling advantages over all existing video coding standards. It has the potential to redraw the landscape of consumer and enterprise video applications. It reached Final Committee Draft (FCD) status on July 26, 2002.