Real, Intel ink software deal

Cyberbiz brief

RealNetworks has inked a lucrative deal with Intel that packages the Seattle-based company’s Internet video and audio software with the main circuit cards that power most PCs. Deal is a coup for RealNetworks, whose RealPlayer and RealJukebox software is battling with Microsoft’s Windows Media Player and Apple’s Quicktime software for market share.

Under terms of the deal, RealNetworks’ software will be distribbed on CD-ROMS and bundled together with Intel’s new motherboards that support the chipmaker’s Pentium III and Celeron processors.

RealNetworks now still faces an obstacle of getting consumers to install the software on their computers — the same software that is also already available as a free download off the Web. That’s something Microsoft doesn’t have to worry about regarding its Windows Media Player, which is automatically installed on PCs running Windows. Roughly 85% of all the streaming media content available online is available in a Real-branded format. RealPlayer has more than 200 million unique registered users worldwide. RealJukebox boasts 60 million and growing registered users.

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