Thursday, January 26th 2012

Intel to Buy Patents and Next Generation Video Codec Software From RealNetworks

RealNetworks, Inc. today announced that it has signed an agreement to sell a significant number of its patents and its next generation video codec software to Intel Corporation for a purchase price of $120 million. Under terms of the sale, RealNetworks retains certain rights to continue to use the patents in current and future products.

"Selling these patents to Intel unlocks some of the substantial and unrealized value of RealNetworks assets," said Thomas Nielsen, RealNetworks President and CEO. "It represents an extraordinary opportunity for us to generate additional capital to boost investments in new businesses and markets while still protecting our existing business.

"RealNetworks is pleased Intel has agreed to acquire our next generation video codec software and team," said Nielsen. "Intel has a strong reputation as a technology innovator, and we believe they are well positioned to build on the development work and investment we've made in this area."

"As the technology industry evolves towards an experience-centric model, users are demanding more media and graphics capabilities in their computing devices. The acquisition of these foundational media patents, additional patents and video codec software expands Intel's diverse and extensive portfolio of intellectual property," said Renée James, Intel senior vice president and general manager of the Software and Services Group. "We believe this agreement enhances our ability to continue to offer richer experiences and innovative solutions to end users across a wide spectrum of devices, including through Ultrabook devices, smartphones and digital media."

In addition to the sale of the patents and next-generation video codec software, RealNetworks and Intel signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on future support and development of the next-generation video codec software and related products.

"We look forward to working with Intel to support the development of the next-generation video codec software and to expanding our relationship into new products and markets," said Nielsen.

RealNetworks does not anticipate that the sale of the approximately 190 patents and 170 patent applications and next generation video codec software will have any material impact on its businesses. RealNetworks businesses include a wide variety of SaaS products and services provided to global carriers, RealPlayer, the Helix streaming media platform, GameHouse online and social games, SuperPass and other media products and services sold both directly to consumers and through partners.
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24 Comments on Intel to Buy Patents and Next Generation Video Codec Software From RealNetworks

#1
digibucc
i always hated Real, is it actually any good? was it just their implementation, and the patents/techs are actually worth something?
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#2
KainXS
Nope real has sucked for along time
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#3
TheMailMan78
Big Member
by: KainXS
Nope real has sucked for along time
The fact Intel bought them means they have SOMETHING good. Dunno what but Intel does I guess. :laugh:
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#4
brandonwh64
Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!
I remember when alot of p0rn was in real player form HAHAHA
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#5
TheMailMan78
Big Member
by: brandonwh64
I remember when alot of p0rn was in real player form HAHAHA
lol I remember that. It was a bitch to get real player to run right on a 6500/300 Mac.
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#6
brandonwh64
Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!
by: TheMailMan78
lol I remember that. It was a bitch to get real player to run right on a 6500/300 Mac.
LOL I remember trying to use it on a Pentium I 166Mhz with 8MB ram and a 4MB video HAHAHA It ran at like 2 FPS at best IF it even loaded in the crappy windows 95 realplayer.
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#7
Drone
I hope they bought it to kill it
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#8
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: digibucc
i always hated Real, is it actually any good? was it just their implementation, and the patents/techs are actually worth something?
They have arguably the best quality MP3 decoder (Helix) among all media players.
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#9
ensabrenoir
Intel up to something....

This is but a small peice of a larger puzzle....intel makes major moves.
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#10
NdMk2o1o
I agree and hated RP for a long time though now I use it regularly as my main program for downloading porn funny YouTube videos
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#11
InnocentCriminal
Resident Grammar Amender
Always hated RealPlayer - scumware.
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#12
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Intel wanted a video codec for something but I can't think of what. The only thing I can think of is Intel is going to push for its inclusion in HTML5 spec. Intel could then hardware accelerate it on all Intel processors from desktops to smartphones giving them an advantage in those fields. A lot could be gained from a codec designed to be intrinsict with the hardware and Intel obviously didn't want to start from scratch when they got money to aquire something else. Real's codec is the only one on the market that is not public and not completely untouchable.
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#13
xfire
Real makes a pretty good player for Android.
As far as the codecs go, it could be for their graphics cards. Maybe a video converter that uses the graphics card in the works.
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#14
hhumas
this is the time for real to cash out
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#15
treehouse
by: FordGT90Concept
Intel wanted a video codec for something but I can't think of what. The only thing I can think of is Intel is going to push for its inclusion in HTML5 spec. Intel could then hardware accelerate it on all Intel processors from desktops to smartphones giving them an advantage in those fields. A lot could be gained from a codec designed to be intrinsict with the hardware and Intel obviously didn't want to start from scratch when they got money to aquire something else. Real's codec is the only one on the market that is not public and not completely untouchable.
isn't the whole point of HTML5 is the fact that its cross platform and no one business has control over it unlike adobe flash? if HTML5 performed better on intels hardware because of a CODEC then that would be against the HTML5 standardisation process no?

please correct me if i am wrong as i have limited knowledge about HTML5
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#16
Steevo
When has that ever stopped intel?

The dancing sheep. then it went to shit and tried to hijack everything.
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#17
semantics
ionno what codec they bought but the default settings for the latest variation of real codec, RV40, did as good if not better then VC-1 or x264 did in dealing with anime but wasn't as good for film, when comparing IQ/bitrate at a highly compressed level, so small files, so next gen version may actually be something but ionno why they would buy it as you need market adoption else you get shitty real player only sort of deal,(which is the owner of real network's fault)
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#18
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
by: treehouse
isn't the whole point of HTML5 is the fact that its cross platform and no one business has control over it unlike adobe flash? if HTML5 performed better on intels hardware because of a CODEC then that would be against the HTML5 standardisation process no?

please correct me if i am wrong as i have limited knowledge about HTML5
They get Real's codec included in HTML5 specification so that it requires all HTML5 compliant browsers to have the codec. The content would play on all computers but would be hardware accelerated on Intel platforms.

This is speculation by the way. It seems the most plausible reasoning behind the purchase.
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#19
mastrdrver
by: TheMailMan78
The fact Intel bought them means they have SOMETHING good. Dunno what but Intel does I guess. :laugh:
It means Real was willing to sell when everyone else said no.
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#20
ViperXTR
any relation to Quicksync decoder/encoder? D:
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#21
mastrdrver
I'm thinking probably more related to their desire push in to smart phones and tablets. Nothing like having your own video player to help sell phones/tablets around your processor.
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#22
Roph
by: btarunr
They have arguably the best quality MP3 decoder (Helix) among all media players.
libmad would have a few things to say about that.

And Helix as an encoder ignores quality in the pursuit of encoding speed, it's a piece of trash.
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#23
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: Roph
libmad would have a few things to say about that.

And Helix as an encoder ignores quality in the pursuit of encoding speed, it's a piece of trash.
Real's MP3 decoder is superior to libmad. Not even WMP running FFG 3.04 ACM codec comes close to RealPlayer in MP3 playback quality.
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#24
newfellow
yep, hahahaha.. Dig up the dead is now word in modern buyouts. Raise the crappy codec up and make it the greatest thing there is!

:toast:

Have to say this is hilarious crap.
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