http://www.yeald.com/Yeald/a/32011/itunes__ipod_really_about_quicktime.html iTunes, iPod really about Quicktime Readers Apple's tactics in music have strengthened the position of the Quicktime media platform in the realm of media consumption. This could be parlayed into a dominant position in video consumption. A bit of history. Apple was quick out of the gates with Quicktime in the first half of the 90's, and established many of the user interface and software conventions related to time-based media, including the ability to cut, paste and manipulate video on consumer hardware and in normal applications, such as word processors and presentations. Quicktime has been widely adopted in the content creation industries, and has also been standardized as the core of the MPEG file format in MPEG 4. Microsoft has positioned its proprietary Windows Media format as less costly and thus more attractive than the standard proposed by the industry itself. This is partly true because of wrangling over licensing fees for some of the proprietary codecs involved in the MPEG standard. Apple has vociferously advocated for viable licensing terms with the license holders. In a familar pattern, Microsoft seems to be acting as though there were no relevant industry standard, and that its client monopoly on the PC establishes Windows Media, de-facto, as the standard. That's fine as long as the PC is the key to the media distribution ecosystem. With the iPod and iTunes, Apple has opened an explosive channel for establishing its standards compliant media platform on top of the Windows PC client operating system. Apple has also bought some software, called FairPlay, from a company called VeriDisc, that protects copyrighted material from unauthorized copying, thus encouraging content owners to get involved on a massive scale. This move has also clearly placated these same owners' concerns about another very relevant fact: iTunes and the iPod leverage by far the most common means of music distribution. These are, of course, CDs and illegal downloads. Steve Ballmer has said, referring to music, that Apple's market share is so small that it "can never reach critical mass." iTunes music store aside, even if every iPod owner only got music onto their iPod from CDs they bought at a store, they would also in the process put a full copy of the Quicktime media platform on a computer somewhere. Apple's PC market share is irrelevant. In fact, it's a safe bet that the majority of computers in question run Windows. And under the iTunes deal, every HP consumer PC will have Quicktime installed even if no iPod comes with it. Apple's market share in music looks like it's already reached critical mass. The dark force to be reckoned with here may be Quicktime. Here is an article from CNET suggesting that iTunes opens the way for standards in streaming: http://news.com.com/Apples+music+Microsofts+sour+note/2100-1027_3-998880.html ---------------------------------------------------------------------- You can UNSUBSCRIBE from the OpenDTV list in two ways: - Using the UNSUBSCRIBE command in your user configuration settings at FreeLists.org - By sending a message to: opendtv-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with the word unsubscribe in the subject line.