RealNetworks Inc. on Wednesday released the latest version of its digital media player with support for all of the major Internet media formats, including those from competitors Microsoft Corp. and Apple Computer Inc.
RealNetworks of Seattle first announced RealPlayer 10 for Windows in January and said it would include support for playing music purchased through Apples iTunes, working around Apples digital rights management technology.
Along with supporting the latest RealAudio and RealVideo formats, RealPlayer 10 also supports Windows Media and Apples QuickTime MPEG-4 formats, as well as standard MP3 and Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) formats, the company said.
Consumers “finally have a single product that works with their favorite portable devices and plays all the great free and premium content they find online,” Richard Wolpert, RealNetworks chief strategy officer, said in a statement.
The new player, previously in beta, is now a final release and is available for download in North America, Europe (in English and German) and Japan, with additional international versions set to launch in the summer.
Among the players new features are integration with the RealPlayer online music store in the U.S. version, the ability to fast-forward and rewind within streams without any delay as well as to pause live streams, and support for more than 50 portable music devices, including Apples iPod.
RealNetworks latest release comes in the midst of its antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft over the Redmond, Wash., software makers inclusion of Windows Media Player in the Windows operating system.
It also follows the European Unions recent ruling against Microsoft, which some observers believe could benefit RealNetworks because it requires Microsoft to offer a version of Windows stripped of Windows Media Player.
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