Microsoft’s WMP to support MP3 Rips — Finally

Microsoft Corp. is finally enabling users of its Windows Media Player software to rip — jargon for “record” — a CD in the widely popular MP3 format.

CyberLink Corp., InterVideo Inc. and RAVISENT Technologies Inc., on Monday unveiled two new add-on products that will enhance the media player on the upcoming Windows XP. The audio add-on is called the MP3 Creation Pack. The second add-on is the DVD Decoder Pack, which will install support for the playback of DVDs via Windows Media Player for Windows XP if a user does not have a DVD decoder.

Up until now, Microsoft’s media software principally supported its own Windows Media Audio (WMA) format. RealNetworks’ competing RealPlayer and RealJukebox system has supported MP3 for some time.

CyberLink, InterVideo and RAVISENT will each offer for download via the Web an MP3 Creation Pack for Windows XP and a DVD Decoder Pack for Windows XP. Users of Windows XP will be able to order and download these new add-on packs from each company’s Web site via links inside Windows Media Player for Windows XP. The add-on packs for Windows XP can be purchased separately or together and will be available for download by Oct. 25.

Pricing has yet to be announced.

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