First Microsoft VC-1 Encoder Tools Now Available From Leading Solution Providers

Posted by bink on September 7 2007, 3:07 PM. Posted in Windows Media.

Anystream, Envivio, Inlet Technologies, Memory-Tech, Rhozet (Harmonic Inc.),Tarari and ViewCast announce first products using new Microsoft® VC-1 Encoder SDK.

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands — Sept. 7, 2007 — Today at IBC2007, Microsoft Corp. announced broad industry support for the Microsoft® VC-1 Encoder software development kit (SDK), a commercial offering first announced at the 2007 National Association of Broadcasters conference in April. Leading companies in digital delivery services and compression tools have taken advantage of the substantial quality and performance improvements delivered through the new SDK and are building next-generation offerings that efficiently produce pristine video imagery for a variety of distribution and consumption scenarios. Additionally recognizing the benefits of faster encoding and the value of delivering best-of-breed video quality to their customers, leading content providers have adopted the new VC-1 Encoder technology through the use of new products and tools.

In the broadband and mobile content distribution segments, Red Bee Media has chosen tools based on the Microsoft VC-1 Encoder from Anystream Inc. to rapidly repurpose and streamline the delivery of high-quality, bandwidth-efficient video content for the BBC’s innovative new iPlayer service.

“We chose Anystream Agility because it allowed us to utilize the efficiencies of the new Microsoft VC-1 Encoder to dynamically process and deliver the highest-quality video across a host of viewing scenarios,” said Bob Johnson, chief technology officer at Red Bee Media. “With its extensibility from mobile-based scenarios to the highest-quality HD optical discs, the use of the Microsoft VC-1 Encoder provides us the with flexibility to deliver content to the BBC optimized for virtually any screen and know it’s going to meet the BBC’s high standards.”

Top-tier content and service providers have also realized the benefits of Microsoft VC-1 Encoder technology in creating high-definition (HD) content for HD optical disc titles as well as broadband video on demand. European facilities CMC, DMP, Sonopress, Imagion AG and DS&DVD and U.S. facilities GDMX, Deluxe and Blink Digital (an Ascent Media company) are all delivering next-generation HD DVD and/or Blu-ray titles using the technology. In addition, Microsoft and Amazon.com recently announced a program for independent filmmakers allowing them to publish up to 1,000 HD DVD titles with no set up fee through CreateSpace, part of the Amazon group of companies, which uses the new VC-1 Encoder technology to produce high- quality, on-demand optical media titles. To date, over 85 percent of all HD DVD titles available in the U.S. have been encoded using VC-1.

In response to the efficiencies and quality of the new product, Microsoft’s popular Xbox LIVE® Marketplace, with its high standards for quality and bandwidth, has also adopted the SDK and has committed to delivering only video created with SDK-based tools. Microsoft Silverlight™, a cross-browser, cross-platform plug-in for delivering next-generation media, also supports content generated from products based on the Microsoft VC-1 Encoder SDK, among others.

“As digital delivery matures, high-fidelity display devices proliferate, and consumer expectations continue to rise, content providers are recognizing the value of delivering superior-quality video to their customers,” said Amir Majidimehr, corporate vice president of the Consumer Media Technology Group at Microsoft. “The Microsoft VC-1 Encoder SDK gives solution providers access to features and capabilities developed through years of experience with the Hollywood encoding facilities, generating the award-winning video quality seen on HD DVD today.”

Among the first to develop products based on the Microsoft VC-1 Encoder SDK are world-class solution providers Anystream, Envivio Inc., Harmonic Inc., Inlet Technologies, Memory-Tech Corp., Tarari Inc. and ViewCast Corp.

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