Dolby Laboratories has announced that Microsoft has selected Dolby Digital Plus for the audio for Windows 8 on tablets and PCs.
Dolby officials said the addition of Dolby Digital Plus enables the playback of Dolby-encoded content across a growing number of devices. And the May 3 announcement underscores the role that Dolby Digital Plus plays in delivering high-quality sound for online entertainment services and personal media applications.
"Dolby's goal is to deliver the best possible entertainment experience, wherever content is delivered through broadcast, broadband or wireless networks," said Ramzi Haidamus, executive vice president of sales and marketing at Dolby, in a statement. "We are pleased to be working with Microsoft to address the growing demand for high-definition content delivered across a broad range of services and devices. Widespread availability of Dolby Digital Plus on Windows 8 will enable more people to enjoy cinematic sound anytime, anywhere, and on any device."
"With the incredible growth of online download and streaming media, particularly for video content, this agreement ensures a great audio experience for those consumers who wish to download or stream TV and movies containing Dolby Digital Plus," said Tami Reller, chief financial officer and chief marketing officer for Windows and Windows Live at Microsoft, in a statement. "Additionally, all of their existing and future home videos recorded with Dolby Digital Plus audio will work great on Windows 8 right out of the box."
Developers will be able to deliver immersive experiences and cinematic sound through Windows 8 APIs in desktop and Metro-style apps, including those developed for x86 and ARM architectures, Dolby said. Dolby Digital Plus 5.1-channel decoding and Dolby Digital two-channel encoding will be supported in all PCs and tablets licensed to run Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows RT editions.
Dolby said Dolby Digital Plus is used in more than 640 million devices and is a standard for high-quality audio on many types of products, including smartphones, tablets, PCs, connected TVs, Blu-ray Disc players and game consoles.
Microsoft has used Dolby encoding since the shipment of Windows Vista in 2007. However, in August of 2008, Dolby warned investors that Windows 8 might not feature Dolby technology. That warning sent Dolbys stock down 18 percent. So todays announcement is good news for Dolby investors.