RealTime IT News

Sony Adopts RealNetworks Player, Jukebox

RealNetworks, Inc. and Sony Corporation Monday announced Sony will include both RealPlayer and RealJukebox with Sony's portable music devices and VAIO PCs beginning in 2001, and RealNetworks will include ATRAC3 technology, Sony's audio compression technology, in RealSystem 8.

Under the agreement, Sony will distribute customized versions of RealNetworks' RealPlayer 8 and RealJukebox 2, with multiple Sony products. In addition, VAIO customers will receive RealPlayer and RealJukebox. With RealJukebox, Sony VAIO customers can build and manage personal music collections by recording their personal CD collections using ATRAC3 technology, accessing downloadable music on the Internet, and organizing their music. RealJukebox will also be distributed with Sony portable digital music devices using ATRAC3 technology, providing integration and management of digital music with Sony devices.

RealNetworks is licensing two of Sony's latest digital music technologies: ATRAC3, Sony's compressed digital music format, and OpenMG, Sony's copyright protection technology. With the addition of RealNetworks, Sony's ATRAC3 now has support from 21 licensees. OpenMG provides for secure distribution of music from content provider to PCs and portable music devices. RealNetworks will add support for Sony's OpenMG in the future.

"We are thrilled that Sony has selected RealJukebox as the primary music software product for multiple Sony products, and excited to include Sony's ATRAC3 in RealSystem 8 for high quality recording and playback," said Rob Glaser, chairman and CEO, RealNetworks, Inc. "By teaming with one of the world's leading consumer electronics and technology companies, RealNetworks will continue providing the best and latest secure digital music solutions for consumers worldwide."

"We are delighted to be expanding our relationship with RealNetworks, the leader in media delivery on the Internet, to provide Sony customers with the industry-leading RealJukebox and RealPlayer," said Keiji Kimura, President, Information Technology Company of Sony's Personal IT Network Company. "With today's announcement, ATRAC3 will be available to more than 45 million unique registered users of RealJukebox, providing broad compatibility with Sony's innovative portable digital music devices and MagicGate Memory Stick products."

"We believe the alliance between Sony and RealNetworks will do much to advance the digital music marketplace, as it gives consumers a fluid process for enjoying and moving music from their PCs to next-generation digital devices," said Dick Anderson, general manager, IBM Global Media and Entertainment Industry. "The alliance also advances existing collaborations we have with both companies in supporting music protected with IBM's Electronic Media Management System."

"The combination of ATRAC3, a superior quality digital music format, OpenMG, a secure digital rights management technology, and RealJukebox, the most popular jukebox software, will make it easier for consumers to obtain a wide range of music and video online," said Al Smith, senior vice president, Sony Music Entertainment Inc. "The integration of RealNetworks and Sony's technologies addresses our main concerns of copyright protection and high fidelity sound."