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View Full Version : Nokia to put Microsoft's music player on handsets


slaughters
02-14-2005, 04:16 PM
The world's largest mobile phone maker, Nokia, and software giant Microsoft struck a deal on Monday to make it easier for consumers to buy digital music on-line and play it back on their handsets.

>>>> Link <<<< (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=581&e=3&u=/nm/20050214/tc_nm/tech_nokia_microsoft_dc)

Beamtracer
02-14-2005, 07:17 PM
This would be enough for me to avoid purchasing a Nokia phone.

It's a dangerous move. Microsoft already has one monopoly (desktop OS) and is using that to gain another monopoly (cellular telephone).

It sounds clunky anyway. Windows media gets converted to Dolby AAC (advanced audio codec). They should have just run with MPEG4 audio which includes AAC anyway.

Motorola has gone the other way. Not only have they gone MP4, but they've licensed Apple's digital rights management which gives Motorola phone users access to the iTunes music store.

allseeingi
02-14-2005, 08:21 PM
Why would you want music on your phone when theres now an iPod for every occasion? :scream:

I'll have my check now Mr. Apple sales rep. :thumbsup:

Seriously though, I guess the important point is this:

In return [for Nokia allowing Windows Media on it's phones], Microsoft, will introduce open standards for digital music compression and piracy protection in its Media Players for personal computers.

...

Mobile services operators around the world are pressing hard for open standards so that consumers are not confined to only one format for playing the songs they legally purchased.

...

Internet music stores offer music in their own proprietary formats. On mobile phones however, iTunes would now be the only closed system, while rivals Connect and Loudeye would adopt open standards.

So it gives Nokia the advantage of supporting the software sat on most peoples home computers (Windows), MS the advantage of having Media Player installed on 1/3 mobile handsets worldwide and both of them the advantage of putting pressure on Apple to open up it's own Digital Rights Management. Though I can't see Apple doing this just yet :thumbsup:.

Beamtracer
02-14-2005, 09:30 PM
So it gives Nokia the advantage of supporting the software sat on most peoples home computers (Windows)
That's exactly the problem. It ties your mobile cellular telephone to the Windows operating system.

Microsoft is a mono-platform company. They released the Windows Media Player for Mac, but it was a hobbled version with many of the codecs missing. They released Internet Explorer for Mac, but once IE had gained 96% of the browser market they pulled IE for Mac. Look at Microsoft's history of cross-platform support... it's woeful.

Yes, Apple's iTunes music store is the current dominant online music store, but Apple didn't use any monopoly do get there. They got an early break in this market and ran with it, before Microsoft knew what had happened. Apple's iTunes software is also supported equally on both Mac and Windows, so you don't have to have the Mac OS to use it.

Microsoft wants to get its Digital Rights Management (DRM) software into every cellular telephone, and this Nokia deal will help them achieve this. The desktop monopoly gets extended to the screen of your cellphone. You want to listen to music? You must use a Windows desktop to do it. Sorry, Linux users, this is Microsoft territory now.

allseeingi
02-14-2005, 11:36 PM
Microsoft wants to get its Digital Rights Management (DRM) software into every cellular telephone, and this Nokia deal will help them achieve this.

I agree with everything you say, and if the past repeats itself as has happened time and time again, this move will end up being bad for consumers. However, if it's open standard at least you could buy any phone and know that it's going to work with the music you've got on your Windows machine. Similarly, if use Internet Explorer (on your PC) you know it's going to work with pactically every website ever created. And all at the cost of no choice and no innovation in the marketplace because all the competitors have been wiped out! See, I don't like MS really :scream:! But it does go both ways :).

Without wanting to go too far off topic, regarding MS and DRM, am I wrong in thinking that with Longhorn and beyond, DRM will integrated into practically everything? So that I can't listen to my music, watch a video or even run an application on it unless I have the correct license built into the files? Because to me that really does sound like a scary situation.

bleeper
02-14-2005, 11:53 PM
Cool, be a nice upgrade from my current Nokia.
"The King of PCs". :buttrock:

Gentle Fury
02-15-2005, 03:30 AM
ughh, I have a PDA that runs on Pocket PC and has Windows Media Player for mobile in it.......it is the worst, buggiest piece of crap player on the planet....and I hope all you MS enthusiasts that are happy about this love WMA format, cuz thats all it plays. ;)

Yeah, argue if you want, but the MP3 support on it is buggy as hell at best. It will play an MP3 for about 5 secs then either completly crash or re-order the way the song should be played giving you a really annoying remix.

Para
02-15-2005, 08:01 AM
Microsoft is a mono-platform company.

Hmm. Windows 2000 for Sun SPARC, Windows CE for RISC, Office for Mac, games for X-Box...doesn't sound mono-platform to me unlike Apple which basically makes their own platform and sticks only onto that (even that it would be just a recompile away to make the Mac OS X work on PC:s, of course there wouldn't be that much drivers than with Windows but still...)

Besides the only alternative so far for Nokia's phones has been Real Audio and we all know how much that sucks.

It sounds clunky anyway. Windows media gets converted to Dolby AAC (advanced audio codec). They should have just run with MPEG4 audio which includes AAC anyway.

Dolby AAC is MPEG4.

Without wanting to go too far off topic, regarding MS and DRM, am I wrong in thinking that with Longhorn and beyond, DRM will integrated into practically everything? So that I can't listen to my music, watch a video or even run an application on it unless I have the correct license built into the files? Because to me that really does sound like a scary situation.

Doesn't DRM need hardware support? Besides, what's so scary about showing you own the licenses to stuff you listen/watch/use? :) And don't forget that the copyright owner basically makes the license which could read as simply as possible "You can distribute this file freely and use it where ever you want in any form." and that'd be it.


EDIT: Accidentally wrote PocketPC instead of Windows CE. Whoopsie.

allseeingi
02-15-2005, 11:37 PM
Hmm. Windows 2000 for Sun SPARC, Windows CE for RISC, Office for Mac, games for X-Box...doesn't sound mono-platform to me unlike Apple which basically makes their own platform and sticks only onto that (even that it would be just a recompile away to make the Mac OS X work on PC:s, of course there wouldn't be that much drivers than with Windows but still...)

You are right, MS does write software for other platforms, when it suits them (which is fine, they are a business) and sometimes they even do a pretty good job of it like Office for Mac. But it's wrong to say Apple doesn't do the same. Quicktime and iTunes are both multiplatform and are probably the two most important applications Apple make. It's also understandable that they wan't to hold a lot back, including OS X, because they would have a much tougher job on their hands selling hardware (They are after all also a business).

Doesn't DRM need hardware support? Besides, what's so scary about showing you own the licenses to stuff you listen/watch/use? :) And don't forget that the copyright owner basically makes the license which could read as simply as possible "You can distribute this file freely and use it where ever you want in any form." and that'd be it.

I don't think it needs hardware support, but I think you can build hardware to incorporate DRM. I see what you're saying and it's fair enough. I just see it to a certain extent as being increasingly dictated to as to what I can and can't do with my computer. On the other hand, correct me if I'm wrong but License Agreements effectively say "You may borrow the use of this application/OS on our terms, you do not own this software, we do." So as I'm borrowing software and I don't really own it I guess I can't really complain. The scary thing to me is that it's not just a little company controlling how I go about my digital life, it's Microsoft, a very powerful organization with a not-so-great track record of practising business ethically. Some would put it that "I don't have to use Windows or any other MS product" if I don't want. Which is right, if there's some alternatives still around. Luckily there are alternatives at the moment and I have found myself being increasingly drawn to them over recent time. I'm sure I'll still own a Windows machine for quite some time as it's the dominant platform and there are advantages to that, which is the other side of the coin. It will be interesting to see how the whole thing pans out, but as I understand it forseeable versions of OS X won't have such deeply woven DRM, and theres always Linux.

Hopefully.

Beamtracer
02-16-2005, 12:16 AM
Dell, HP and other PC manufacturers once decided to install a Quicktime player on every Windows computer they sold. They agreed to pay Apple a small fee for each player (I think it was something like 90 cents each).

Then, along comes Microsoft and threatens to withdraw the license for Dell & HP to use the Windows operating system, unless they cancelled the deal with Apple. These heavy handed Microsoft tactics came to light during the DoJ anti-trust court case against Microsoft.

Is this the sort of company you want controlling the cellular telephone space?

If Nokia decided to go with a non-MS format (like MPEG4) there would still be software and players available for Windows PC users. It's just that there would also be software for Mac users, Linux users, PalmPilot users etc etc. It's also possible that Microsoft may use its desktop monopoly to influence other parameters of cellular telephones.

As for cross platform, look at Microsoft's history. They release the Internet Explorer web browser for Mac, as in the early stages it needed to be cross-platform to be accepted. As soon as MS has 96% of the browser market and they think they've got it in the bag, they withdraw Internet Explorer for the Mac.

It's a good thing that FireFox has recently come on the scene.

So this issue is not a matter of whether or not you like using Windows on your home computer. The issue is whether you want to allow Microsoft to also control your cellular telephone.

(By the way, MPEG4 audio uses the Dolby AAC codec, but the Dolby codec can also exist without MPEG4)

pgp_protector
02-16-2005, 12:43 AM
You are right, MS does write software for other platforms, when it suits them (which is fine, they are a business) and sometimes they even do a pretty good job of it like Office for Mac. But it's wrong to say Apple doesn't do the same. Quicktime and iTunes are both multiplatform and are probably the two most important applications Apple make. It's also understandable that they wan't to hold a lot back, including OS X, because they would have a much tougher job on their hands selling hardware (They are after all also a business).


So is it the Software (OS X) that makes apple great, If So, sell it to the PC Box & make more money, or the Hardware (Mac) that makes apple great ?

Beamtracer
02-20-2005, 08:34 PM
If Microsoft gets its DRM software installed on every cellular telephone, then that will effectively give Microsoft control of the music industry.

Para
02-20-2005, 08:43 PM
If Microsoft gets its DRM software installed on every cellular telephone, then that will effectively give Microsoft control of the music industry.

If I was a Mac fanboy (or an enthutiatist...or whatever the spelling of that word is) I'd actually be happy if MS was in control of music industry instead of RIAA or it's equivalents all over the world (for example in Finland we have Teosto that does basically the same thing as RIAA in the USA).

pgp_protector raises a valid point. I'm sure Macs would be wildly more supported if there was a PC version of MacOS X. Just think of it Beamie, there would be real competition against Windows on its native platform and as far as I can see that's what you want, right? Of course this would turn on Apple eventually in some form which would force them to open their hardware specs so that there could be a Windows for Apple which would make more competition on that side. And the nice side effect of competition is always the price drops :)

Beamtracer
02-20-2005, 10:46 PM
I'd actually be happy if MS was in control of music industry instead of RIAA or it's equivalents
I think the internet will help reduce the power of the various recording industry associations (hopefully).

There will always be monopolies popping up in all kinds of industries. What's worse is when one company holds monopolies in more than one area. You don't want the same company that is controlling the content of most desktop computers to also control the content of most cellular phones.

Nokia getting into bed with Microsoft may produce such a situation.

And the nice side effect of competition is always the price drops :)
If you want a price drop for your operating system you can get it now by going Linux which is free. In cellular phones, there are Linux based systems as well as the Symbian OS. Microsoft, of course, is trying to push a version of Windows for the cellular phone.

silvergun
02-21-2005, 01:28 AM
Will they add ctrl alt and delete keys to their new range of wma phones?

Para
02-21-2005, 08:20 AM
If you want a price drop for your operating system you can get it now by going Linux which is free.

I pay for quality and support and as far as I've tested, there isn't neither of those in any Linux distro available for free. Besides nowadays new Windows XP license is only aroun 90 euros while couple of years ago it was hundreds of euros.

In cellular phones, there are Linux based systems as well as the Symbian OS. Microsoft, of course, is trying to push a version of Windows for the cellular phone.

Symbian is nice and is used by Nokia already. Symbian also has dominance on mobile OS markets so it'd be really hard to knock it out especially since Nokia owns most of it. One reason for unified platform in cell phones is -once again- making things easier for developers which is the same reason why Windows is the most popular OS.

policarpo
02-21-2005, 02:30 PM
Well, now that Nokia and Msoft have struck a deal, it's just a small step for Napster to come in and extend its services to mobile phone customers. For the monthly fee a Napster users pays, they can truly have their music everywhere (Desktop, Portable Player,and now Phones).

Imagine walking into a club or a bar or some convention where Napster is running (and let's say it's a special event). The music is playing and you load up your phone, see the playlist of upcoming tracks, and previous tracks, decide that you liked some of what you've heard. You select, "Take With Me" since you are a Napster subscriber, leave the place, dock your phone in the car and jam all the way home.

I don't know. I think it's a great idea.

As much as I love my iPod and the iTunes musics store, each day I get a little more concerned with the model of the store. Sometimes I think a monthly subscription to all and any music (from desktop to portable) is really the way to go. Hell, I pay for cable, own a DVR and I am happy with that. I rent DVD's all the time. I am fine with rent and not owning certain types of content. Plus, when I really like the music, I buy the CD.

Just thinking out loud, but I for one am glad this is happening.

Open up the market...let's stir on a new portable revolution. :deal:

Apple should have been doing this 2 years ago in my opinion...but it's Apple, great at some stuff...and just dumb at others.

NanoGator
02-21-2005, 03:40 PM
This would be enough for me to avoid purchasing a Nokia phone.

It's a dangerous move. Microsoft already has one monopoly (desktop OS) and is using that to gain another monopoly (cellular telephone).


MS can't just go buy a monopoly. Frankly, even if they did get a monopoly on phones, it'd be a market driven de-facto monopoly. (Just like Windows or IE.)

igorstshirts
02-21-2005, 04:20 PM
Apple will no doubt make the i-pod a phone here soon. The interesting thing will be to see how strong the mp3 format is... We will be talking to each other in mp3 format very soon, probably at 96kbps and eventually in some crazy 320 kbps 7.1 surround. The old school phone as we know it is on the verge of extinction.
I would like to record customers' orders in mp3 for my protection and order accuracy, then play in i-tunes as needed. I would also like to put them on hold while audio plays in the background with maybe some of my specials as well, without being too commercial... Of course.

Msoft and Nokia are getting ready for the i-phone. I'm sure of it.

Beamtracer
02-21-2005, 07:32 PM
The interesting thing will be to see how strong the mp3 format is... We will be talking to each other in mp3 format very soon
MP3 is old. MP4 (MPEG-4 audio) is much more efficient. It produces better sound quality with lower bandwidth than MP3.

Pity Nokia won't be using MP4 like hundreds of other device manufacturers, as MP4 files can be played on any new RealPlayer or Quicktime player or a multitude of other software programs from different vendors.

No, any Microsoft format will only be playable with a Microsoft player, it won't have good cross-platform support so if you want your phone audio to work properly you won't be able to use Linux or OS X.

It's ironic that Nokia from Finland has cosied up with Microsoft. In contrast, Motorola is making its phone compatible with the iTunes music store, as well as industry standard MP4 (no DRM) files. I believe that most iPods can also play MP3, MP4, and iTunes DRM tracks.

On the subject of iTunes Vs Napster, here's an opinion from The Register about which one will likely win...
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/02/04/napster_go_away/

slaughters
02-21-2005, 08:30 PM
...Pity Nokia won't be using MP4 like hundreds of other device manufacturers, as MP4 files can be played on any new RealPlayer or Quicktime player or a multitude of other software programs from different vendors...Pretty sure I'm able to play MP4 files on windows media player as well.

igorstshirts
02-21-2005, 08:52 PM
That's why I figured that mp3 is just a more all around versitile format. MPEG-4 has a QT as well as a windows format... I think. MPEG-4 does make more sense though, intergrating video in as well.

Beamtracer
02-22-2005, 01:01 AM
MPEG-4 has a QT as well as a windows format... I think

This is because Microsoft tried to sabotage the MPEG-4 format. Microsoft released a tainted version of "MPEG-4" that doesn't comply with the standard.

It's a common tactic of Microsoft to "divide and conquer" like this. They did it with Java, by releasing a tainted non-standard version that wouldn't work unless it was running on Windows.

These kind of practices are catastrophic for the whole computer/IT industry, and for competition.

•On Windows, the free RealPlayer and Quicktime player use standard MPEG-4.

•MP3 audio is derived from the older MPEG-2 video format.

slaughters
02-22-2005, 02:36 AM
This is because Microsoft tried to sabotage the MPEG-4 format. Microsoft released a tainted version of "MPEG-4" that doesn't comply with the standard....Unlike the totally "un-tainted" Quicktime format which has a QT file extension? :)

All I know is that when I double click on a file with the .MP4 file format Windows Media Player will play it.

My thoughts about Video Standards for the Web: (yes I did just hi-jack the thread)

It's not about what's best. It's about what works.

If I am want to produce a video I can expect 100% of web surfers to be able to play then I use the MPG (mpeg-1) file format.

If I want aprox 96% of the world to be able to play them, then I use the WMV file format.

Quicktime is really not an option if I want the average person to be able to watch my animations.

How big is the quick time plugin now, 15MB? 20MB? More? Experience has shown me that web-geeks will have allready downloaded the player, but most business execs, non-IT business workers, small business owners, Mom, Dad, and Mr Joe Blow America have not.

And, Unless they really really love me, they will not dash off to Quicktime, Create an Account (being forced by Apple to cough up their e-mail names), download the 20MB file, install it, then dash back to my site in order to view my, admittedly amaturish, 30 second animations.

Meshbuilder
02-22-2005, 05:45 AM
Create an Account (being forced by Apple to cough up their e-mail names)

You don't need to create an account, and you don't need to give away your e-mail..

Are you talking about realplayer? :rolleyes:

And the file is 20 MB because Apple have added iTunes in the installer.. ohh my god!
It took me less than 30 seconds to download..

slaughters
02-22-2005, 12:02 PM
You don't need to create an account, and you don't need to give away your e-mail...Meshbuilder,

Please follow the Link: http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/
Email, Firstname, lastname, where you live etc.. are asked for.

You might also want to remember that to the average non-IT/non-geek person on a 56KB line, 20MB takes a bit longer than 3 minutes to download.

My experience with several relatives and business aquaintences from the non-IT world shows that if their PC does not support it "out-of-the-box" then they do not have the slightest desire to install stuff just to view a video file. That's why I didn't suggest DivX, even though I think it is one of the best compression codecs available and it's a relativly small download.

NanoGator
02-22-2005, 04:26 PM
You don't need to create an account, and you don't need to give away your e-mail..

Are you talking about realplayer? :rolleyes:

And the file is 20 MB because Apple have added iTunes in the installer.. ohh my god!
It took me less than 30 seconds to download..

Um, the forced iTunes install and the 20 meg download suck no matter how dismissive you are about it. Bad Apple.

Beamtracer
02-22-2005, 11:04 PM
If I want aprox 96% of the world to be able to play them, then I use the WMV file format.
Tell me this... do you really think Microsoft would have gained a stranglehold of the media player business if they didn't prevent PC manufacturers from pre-installing other media players?

As I said before, Microsoft made threats to PC manufacturers to stop them pre-installing Quicktime players on every PC. This all came out in the court cases. Now the "mom & dads" are forced to download other media players, which they probably won't.

A big gorilla monopolist crushing competitors. Is it good to stamp out competition? Who supports this behavior?

Now some people think it's a good thing to allow Microsoft control of media players on cellular telephones. They want the monster to grow bigger.

igorstshirts
02-22-2005, 11:14 PM
I can understand Msoft wanting to keep the whole AVI/WinMedia for themselves. It's like 96% of yous are using Windows... God only knows how many of them are pirated versions.... Hell yeah you're going to get our media player pre-bundled. It's not like one can't download any other players.

Quicktime comes bundled with i-tunes now. You can't get QT without i-tunes (AFAIK). What is the difference... It's a war out there. I wish Msoft won that in court... They should have.

slaughters
02-23-2005, 04:07 AM
Tell me this... do you really think Microsoft would have gained a stranglehold of the media player business if they didn't prevent PC manufacturers from pre-installing other media players....I was talking about what video formats you should use if you want the most people to be able to view your animations on the web.

Currently that looks like MPG and WMV. Are you disagreeing with that?

igorstshirts
02-23-2005, 07:32 PM
Flash is king in variable FPS compressed animation... That should be the standard.

policarpo
02-23-2005, 08:11 PM
We'll get there soon enough. :)

igorstshirts
02-23-2005, 08:32 PM
...or not soon enough.:)

Para
02-23-2005, 09:23 PM
Did someone mention Flash? Well I'll be, here's another news item for you: Nokia licenses Flash technology (http://www.macromedia.com/macromedia/proom/pr/2005/nokia_flashtechnology.html?promoid=AWIP)

Saurus
02-24-2005, 12:31 AM
When I was looking for a new cell phone 5 months ago, I was disappointed that cell phones didn’t already have built in mp3 player. It’s about time someone puts the two things together. Why carry two gadgets when you can have two or three (camera) gadget in one! With MS involved I can download my work’s outlook info into this gadget.

allseeingi
02-24-2005, 02:18 AM
Several people need to get their facts straight regarding downloading Quicktime.

Firstly, if you would care to look at the Quicktime download page (http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/) you'll see when you click 'Download Quicktime' without entering anything in the name/e-mail fields above, it prompts you with 'To recieve newsletter subscription, please enter your e-mail address. Otherwise uncheck the boxes and click proceed'. Seems pretty clear to me, though if you never bothered to read it in the first place I could understand the confusion. So you don't need to register to download Quicktime and you never have.

Secondly, take another look at the download page and you'll see that under the 'Select a language' drop down box you'll see a link for 'Quicktime standalone installer'. Now while the word 'standalone' may not be familiar to everyone with a computer it is an industry standard term that many people should be familiar with. This gives you a (much smaller?) download of 17mb, which may seem an excessively large download to some but then you are getting Quicktime Pro locked out.

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