While Google's VP8 codec, part of WebM, can't quite be considered a success, it has managed to reach some of its goals. There is now an open-source, patent-free video codec that offers performance close to that of proprietary codecs like H.264.
However, V8 hasn't gained wide adoption and likely never will. Still, Google is moving forward with VP9, the next-generation video codec, based on VP8 but offering improved quality, performance and efficiency.
Whether or not VP9 will fare better than VP8 remains to be seen, but Google will do all it can to support it. In fact, YouTube, which already supports WebM and VP8, will support VP9 as well, as soon as Chrome supports it.
WebM, the container format, will support VP9 for video compression as well as Opus for audio. Opus is another win for those supporting open-source codecs as it's been selected as the default choice for WebRTC communications.
As for VP9, it's now getting ready to reach final form, Google plans to come up with a final spec by June 17.