Real to offer Windows Media on Linux by December

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Real to offer Windows Media on Linux by December

Mainstream media player increases Linux's appeal, vendor argues.

Real Networks by December is preparing to launch a Linux version of its Real media player for Linux, enabling the users to play audio and video files in the Windows Media format.

The company's Helix player for Linux currently supports Windows Media, but the upcoming Real player has more advanced features, said Jeff Duchmann, Real's general manager for client and digital rights management technologies told vnunet.com.

The application among things supports burning of CDs and allows users to synchronise their media files between a computer and a mobile device.

The Linux version of the application will increase the appeal of Linux on the desktop for both consumers and enterprises, which increasingly use media for training and corporate communications, argued Duchmann.

"We are making this a desktop that consumers and enterpises can use for all their media needs," he said.

Windows Media codecs have been available for Linux but the legality of those is subject to debate.

The Linux Real player will only play Windows Media files without digital rights management (DRM) technology, excluding media purchased from online music stores such as Napster.

Real on Tuesday also unveiled an agreement with Novell for the bundling of its media player with the Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 operating system.
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