"We really wanted to think of a way for companies to use Windows Media 9 without ever having to contact Microsoft," said Jonathan Usher, Director of Microsoft's Windows digital media division.Microsoft is working hard to make Windows Media the standard format for distributing video material on the Internet. Currently it’s primary competitors include Rea Media and Apple QuickTime.
With open standards, other software companies could create applications that use Microsoft's video-encoding technology, although they would have to pay a license fee, which Usher said would be "low-cost and straightforward."
Hardware makers could create digital video cameras that use the technology, for example, he said. The hardware application market shows a lot of promise for the video format developers since digital cameras, and other portable video imaging devices are quickly becoming more and more popular. Cell phones with built in cameras are one special platform that requires efficient video compression due to the very limited storage capacity. For example the current Nokia phones utilize Real Video format for the video recording.