Qualcomm To Embed Microsoft Streaming Media Guts In CDMA Chips

In a huge strategic win for Redmond, Qualcomm has partnered with Microsoft for embedded technology for improving the performance of streaming media to mobile phones. The MSFT mobile media technology being embedded at silicone will allow faster decoding and reproduction of quality video and audio streams, but also will improve the prospects for MSFT OS software, MSFT-encoded media, and MSFT media encoders for content providers. For a company desperate to get into the mobile phone market, this is a significant strategic win. Typically, technology that is embedded at the chip level is more readily accepted by handset vendors and mobile service providers, because it is already there, much like Internet Explorer was adopted by consumers over Netscape Navigator by virtue of being bundled in the OS. In this sense, Qualcomm holds a great deal of power in the CDMA world, and it is with this embedding strategy that they have enjoyed such success with BREW. Although terms of the deal were not disclosed, I would suspect that the Jacobs family just got a fair bit richer, while the Gates family just got added to Irwin’s Christmas card list. For consumers, this may speed the adoption of mobile video into CDMA markets, but may also inhibit innovation as Redmond swallows another piece of the technology pie. Consumers have so far shown lukewarm interest in mobile video. Mike often writes that he thinks broadcast content for phones is not promising, but he and I differ on this. I think it will play a role when costs come down, and the quantity of mobile-specific content increases.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...