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WebTV Networks and RealNetworks Agree to Provide RealAudio G2 Support For WebTV Networks Subscribers

Agreement Will Bring the Latest RealAudio G2 to WebTV Product Line

REDMOND, Wash., July 1 /PRNewswire/ -- WebTV Networks, Inc. and RealNetworks, Inc. (Nasdaq: RNWK - news) today announced that RealNetworks will provide WebTV Networks with technologies enabling an upgrade of existing WebTV® products to support the latest RealNetworks RealAudio G2 format. In addition, RealNetworks agreed to develop a new RealPlayer G2 for the Windows® CE operating system platform, allowing WebTV to incorporate RealPlayer G2 support in its future products that connect to the WebTV Network(TM) service. Under this agreement, users of WebTV will be able to listen to next-generation RealAudio programming, which will greatly widen their listening choices and enhance their experience on the WebTV Network service. WebTV Networks intends to provide RealAudio G2 support to its subscribers via a service upgrade later this year.

``WebTV strives to provide great value to its subscribers, and RealAudio G2 is an important feature for them,'' said Bruce Leak, president, WebTV Networks, Inc. ``Our ongoing work with RealNetworks continues to allow us to deliver audio technology that makes the Internet experience even more interesting and compelling for our subscribers.''

``This agreement allows us to continue to provide innovative audio technologies such as RealSystem G2 to a TV-based Internet audience,'' said Phil Barrett, senior vice president, Media Technologies, RealNetworks. ``We are pleased that WebTV Networks' growing user base will now be able to enjoy the widest range in Internet audio news, music and entertainment.''

The agreement announced today builds on the support offered by WebTV for earlier RealAudio formats. By adding support for the new RealAudio G2 CODECs in the existing WebTV RealPlayer, WebTV Networks, with help from RealNetworks Broadband Systems team, will fit the latest RealAudio G2 CODECs into the existing WebTV products.

 

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