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Sony, Liquid Audio Integrate Music Delivery Systems

Sony Corp. and Liquid Audio Thursday joined forces to deliver digital music to portable audio players over the Internet.

The companies have made their secure Internet music delivery systems interoperable to enable consumers to playback music downloaded via Liquid Audio on Sony's portable audio players. With added support for Sony's OpenMG copyright protection technology, Liquid Audio (LQID) digital downloads can maintain security when played back on the wide range of Sony portable audio players. In addition, the Liquid System software's support for Sony's ATRAC3 as a primary sound compression format makes it possible for users of the Liquid Player to securely download ATRAC3 music content directly to their PC.

The enhanced Liquid System will begin distributing digital downloads in ATRAC3 later this month. Sony will make these Liquid downloads, and a custom-branded version of the Liquid Player software, available to customers of its new VAIO Music Clip and Memory Stick Walkman devices. Using Liquid Player and Sony OpenMG jukebox software, users can preview, purchase, download and playback secure, CD-quality music files that include lyrics, album art and liner notes. "Liquid Audio's support of Sony's OpenMG in its leading open music delivery system enables customers to access and playback music by using Sony's portable audio players, including Memory Stick Walkman and VAIO Music Clip, while providing the industry with the security and flexibility it requires," said Keiji Kimura, vice president of Sony's personal IT network unit.

"In addition, we believe the strong support of ATRAC3 by Liquid Audio will provide an environment where both customers and content holders can make use of the high quality digital music files in this format."

"Liquid Audio's music delivery system simplifies the consumer experience by enabling access to music in the widest range of digital music formats," said Phil Wiser, Liquid Audio's chief technology officer. "With the added support for Sony's ATRAC3 digital music compression technology, Liquid Audio is making it simple for consumers using new devices from Sony, a leading consumer electronics company, to access and playback a broad selection of CD-quality music."