Microsoft wants us to know that they’re thinking of all those portable gadget vendors out there who want to sell premium entertainment content to their subscribers:
Today at CTIA WIRELESS 2006, Microsoft Corp. announced it will make significant investments in its digital rights management (DRM) technologies to enable a new offering and drive scenarios that support the wireless industry. As wireless delivery of content to mobile handsets continues to grow at a rapid pace, this commitment of resources and manpower will help enable next-generation mobile entertainment scenarios for consumers.
“We’re responding to our wireless partners around the world who are asking for a solution to enable new scenarios in the industry,” said Kevin Johnson, co-president of the Platforms & Services Division at Microsoft. “We want to give consumers what they want —seamless experiences with premium content on a wide range of mobile devices.”
The more than 800 million mobile handsets sold worldwide each year represent a largely untapped market for digital entertainment. Microsoft’s commitment to capitalizing on this opportunity is the result of ongoing discussions with many of the wireless industry’s largest firms.
Microsoft® Windows Media® Digital Rights Management (DRM) is broadly licensed and deployed by more than 100 content services and on hundreds of devices. The platform helps protect and securely deliver content for playback on computers, mobile devices and portable devices. It supports a wide range of business models that include download and play, subscription, and video on demand, and enables device manufacturers to directly acquire licenses on their handsets. The breadth of scenarios supported by Windows Media DRM directly correlates to its status as the most widely used DRM system worldwide. The platform will serve as a key building block to enable new and innovative scenarios for mobile content delivery — an important request of wireless industry leaders.
No word on exactly how much they are investing.