Blasts From the Past: A Decade (Almost) of Headlines

Feb. 29
Microsoft Releases Windows Media Player for Palm-Size PCs

Microsoft released a Palm-PC version of its Windows Media Player. This gives devices from companies like Compaq, Casio, and Hewlett-Packard the ability to play CD-quality digital music. The Palm-size player includes support for Windows Media and MP3, and even includes the security features of Windows Media audio. It also allows users to change its appearance through skins, and even includes playlist functionality. —JA

March 14
RealNetworks Licenses Microsoft’s Windows Media Audio Technology

Is the battle between rivals Microsoft and RealNetworks over? In a surprise announcement today, Microsoft said that RealNetworks has licensed Microsoft’s Windows Media Audio technology for use in its company’s products. What this means is that secure Windows Media audio will be playable on RealNetworks’ software, like RealJukebox. Will Windows Media become the de facto standard for digital audio? Microsoft says yes. Already they have over 70 licensees for its Software Development Kit (SDK) with companies like Sonique, WinAmp, MusicMatch and Sonic Foundry supporting Microsoft technology. —JA

April 4
Editorial: Net Entertainment—Fact or Fallacy?

This winter I decided to get rid of my television set and see how long I could last without one. Actually, I’ve never been a big fan of primetime TV, so it was good not staring at the boob tube every night. But I quickly tired of staring at the empty space where my TV used to be. What was becoming clear to me was that there’s lot of content out there and I could never watch it all. More importantly, I realized that I didn’t want to watch it all. I wanted things that interested me. Sure, I found some nice sites that held my interest, but the true power of the internet is niches. —JA

April 4
AOL Launching High Speed Service With Streaming

America Online finally unveiled its broadband strategy today launching "AOL Plus," which will deliver streaming audio and video content to AOL 5.0 users. AOL 5.0’s "speed detect" feature will roll out this week and will enable members to take advantage of their broadband connections. Content will be supplied from partners including CBS SportsLine, CBS, CNET, CNN,,, House of Blues,,, and, as well as America Online brands MovieFone and Spinner.

April 18
Editorial: What If The Bubble Really Bursts?

Last week was certainly a scary time for investors. But whether it signified the end of an era—the proverbial bursting of the bubble—is unclear. The new economy, the sky-high valuations, the instant millionaire guys and gals are distressing to traditionalists.

But what if it all stopped? When I start to look back at the losses, I think what this could mean for all of us in the future if the markets just never recovered. How do you value a company that has negative $5-per-share earnings? Only 15 of the 57 companies followed in the Streaming Media Index have earnings at all, and only four companies have a P/E of less than 50. —Paul Kushner

June 28
Conventional Broadcasters Getting Wise to the Web

Conventional broadcasters—television and radio affiliates, television and radio syndicators, cable networks, and major radio and television networks—will argue that they are sitting in the catbird seat when it comes to the emerging broadband streaming media phenomenon. But the growing wave of internet-only streamers also have advantages to tout, and though their rivals often neglect to admit it, they pose a real threat to conventional broadcasters. Streaming content providers typically possess advanced internet expertise and savvy, and they recognize that web-based streaming is a unique and incredibly powerful new medium. —Andy Covell

June 28
RealNetworks on Your Cell Phone

RealNetworks ( and Nokia today announced a deal to bring streaming multimedia to cell phones. They will implement RealNetworks’ RealPlayer technology in Nokia’s EPOC-based smart phones, so anyone with these devices can experience Real content. The first Nokia EPOC products to be RealPlayer-enabled will be available in 2001. —JA

Sept. 18
Akamai Files Patent Infringement Suit Against Digital Island

Akamai and Digital Island have stepped into the legal ring to fight out a battle over which company owns the patent that protects aspects of the technology critical to content delivery service. Akamai announced today that it has filed a patent infringement suit against Digital Island ( Digital Island consequently announced that they are suing Akamai for using a related technology for which Digital Island owns the patent. —Ellie Kieskowski

Oct. 2 Provides Complete Coverage of the 2000 Debates

By many accounts, the webcasts of the Republican National Convention and Democratic National Convention were significant events indicating the potential role of streaming in politics.’s coverage will include Live Chats, reader and viewer email, interactive biographies of the candidates, links to their positions on the issues, links to voter information, and the ability to vote for the debate winner in real time. —EK

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