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RealTime IT News

Big Blue Enters Digital Media Delivery Market

IBM on Thursday announced plans to introduce a format-agnostic Digital Media Delivery Solution (DMDS) for enterprise customers.

With Microsoft and RealNetworks hogging the spotlight in the digital media distribution space, IBM's announcement of its own "superstructure" signals the entry of another big-name player to the lucrative business market for streaming media technology.

The new DMDS, which is part of IBM's Digital Media Factory, boasts of integration capabilities superior to those offered by Microsoft or RealNetworks. It comes fitted with technology for content delivery, content management, commerce and promises an all-in-one superstructure for digital media distribution capabilities.

IBM Digital Media Group marketing executive Keith Myer told internetnews.com the DMDS would target enterprise clients looking for an integrated platform to power communication with remote employees and possibly for universities using streaming media as part of e-learning offerings.

"You cannot deliver data without the content management system and that is the big breakthrough here. This will provide streaming technology that helps customers leverage digital media in every phase of their business lifecycle," Myer said.

"It's format-agnostic. It doesn't matter if the data is MPEG, video, audio or text graphic. This deals with the distribution of large, unstructured files," he said.

Myer claimed DMDS gave Big Blue a leg up on rivals in the space because it was the first pre-integrated offering that manages the entire architecture for digital media delivery. "I don't see this as going head-to-head with Microsoft of RealNetworks. They have piece-parts of this at the consumer end."The new software, which debuts at Supercomm 2003 in Atlanta, GA in the first week of June, includes technology from Cisco to handle content management and rich media automation capabilities from Media Publisher Inc. to power distribution and scheduling.

Myer said the DMDS would find favor with enterprises because an all-in-one offering would create an affordable entry point to enable digital media delivery and speed up time to market.

He said Marist College has already signed up to use the DMDS to deliver education materials to students in remote locations.

DMDS is being marketed with alternative media publishing and delivery options like Media Publisher from MPI for control of media publishing and delivery including live streaming and WebSphere Digital Media Enabler for access to digital media in an e-commerce environment.

It's not the first big move by IBM in the digital media space. Earlier this year, IBM launched a new digital video platform aimed at helping broadcasters switch from analog-based tape editing systems and deploy near-line storage area networks).