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Philips, Microsoft in Windows Media and consumer electronics agreement

By Simon Aughton

Posted on 12 May 2005 at 11:56

Philips and Microsoft have announced plans to begin integrating Windows Media technologies, including digital rights management, into a range of Philips' consumer electronics products based on its Nexperia programmable system-on-a-chip.

Philips initially plans to support Windows Media Audio and Video and Windows Media DRM 10 in digital media receivers, personal video recorders, portable audio players, IP set-top boxes and video phones. These will be followed by in-car entertainment systems and 'next generation' digital TV.

Windows Media technologies power around 150 online digital music, TV video services worldwide. Philips said that it is committed to obtaining PlaysForSure verification for these products, to ensure that users can access a broad choice of downloadable or subscription content on their devices.

'The Internet is becoming increasingly vital as a means of multimedia content distribution,' said Frans van Houten, president and CEO of Philips Semiconductors. 'By supporting Windows Media technology in our designs, we're opening up additional opportunities for our customers to offer a seamless user experience from the Internet and the PC to consumer electronics devices at home and on the move.'

Philips said the agreements with Microsoft are part of what it calls its Connected Planet strategy.

'We see this initiative as a next step in the realisation of the Connected Planet, our vision of a world where consumers can access content anywhere, anytime,' said Rudy Provost, CEO of Philips Consumer Electronics. 'The essence of this initiative is to provide consumers, in addition to the currently supported formats, wireless access to a growing number of digital photos, music and videos on their PC and Internet, which they can enjoy on their TVs, home entertainment systems and stereos everywhere in the home.'

The agreements are non-exclusive and Philips will continue to support other industry formats and digital rights management solutions.

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