Microsoft trying to push its way into DVD

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Lance Nichols, Dec 12, 2001.

  1. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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    don't know if this belongs in the Software side, or the hardware side. Mods, please move this is necessary.
    Seems Microsoft has managed to pay it's way into the DVD hardware scene. 90% of the current MPEG decoder chipset manufacturers have will be putting Windows Media File Encoding in new chipsets. If I was a betting man, I would say they paid the hardware makers a TON of cash for them to integrate this.
    http://www.eetimes.com/story/OEG20011211S0054
    http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/n...kpt=zdnn_nbs_hl
    How long is it before the studios try to force upgrades on all of us for this? Will MS be bankrolling the studios to produce content in WMA rather then the standard MPEG2 format? WMA is a compression format based on the industry standard MPEG4 format. If the hardware companies want to add "improved" compression schemes, why not stick with an open standard?
    I am frightened. The ONLY advantage we have is the fast growing pace of DVD's acceptance. It would kill the momentum to switch compression formats midstream.
     
  2. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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    Maybe I'm hopelessly naive, but I don't see this as fundamentally different than the players out now that can play MP3 files. Since WMA competes directly with MP3, it makes sense that M$ would want to get on the decoder chips along side the competition. The ability to decode WMV is a bonus to folks who burn WMV videos onto CDs and want to see 'em on a TV (but don't want to throw money at the still-nebulous DVD-RAM/DVD-RW/DVD+RW cloud o' standards).

    It's MP3 Microsoft wants to stomp, not DVD.

    Ryan
     
  3. wally

    wally Second Unit

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    M$ wants to stomp everything not M$.
     
  4. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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    I might agree with this (them wanting to do MP3), but to me the two articles seemed to be trumpeting the VIDEO side of things pretty strongly. These guys have more money and clout then most countries, and have undue influence in the few countries that could stand up to them.

    I would not put it past them to throw some money at the studios to force the issue. Remember, the head of the company lied, scammed and generally dissed the goverment of the US under oath. The manipulations of this company at trial pushed the trial judge even past his limits, foring his removal from the trial, and now putting in place "penalties" that will likely increase Microsoft's domanace.

    Don't put anything past them.
     
  5. Anthony_J

    Anthony_J Stunt Coordinator

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    Maybe, I'm the naive one, but aside from the principle of the thing, why are M$'s competitive practices necessarily a bad thing for the end users of their products (i.e., you and me)?

    Sure, in the PC arena, we're pretty much forced to use inherently buggy versions of Windows, and M$ would eat up the "free" concept of the internet, but how do those results relate to the DVD market (or the gaming console market for that matter). This isn't really like the programming field, where people are creating stuff for the sheer intellectualism of it. Everybody involved with the making, distribution, and selling of DVD's or game consoles is in it for the money, anyway. Consumers (us) have to pay regardless.

    It's not like we're faced with price fixing schemes or anything, and for the most part, we have all benefitted from M$ capabilities in some way or another. Are we really afraid that M$ will take over the world? How exactly would M$ limit our choices, or force anything down our throats?

    Please know that I'm not trying to flame anybody. I just haven't followed this whole M$ issue too closely, so I'm not sure of the ramifications of having an extremely dominant force in a strictly "for-profit" market.
     
  6. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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    Anthony_J

    You already know part of the answer, I suspect, by calling them M$. This company has consistanly used illegal or bad faith tactics in almost all of it's business practices.

    Their entry into the Game console market is NOT just for gaming. Once people equate the xbox/Microsoft name with hardware, it will be relatively easy for M$ to add "features" to the box. Imagine a new Xbox comes out, now it has TiVo/Replay like timeshifting functions, and features the "improved" WMA video format. Now you have a box that will play games, DVDs, record you favorite TV shows, Play CDs,and will play "enhanced" Windows Media File DVDs. What happens to Replay, or Tivo? Goodbye! What about MP3 Audio CDs? Nope, sorry only WMA audio files. J6P, sorry the average consumer will want one box, not three or four.

    Anouther update comes along, and it will only play WMA Video DVDs.

    This is the fear many have about this, and other incursions. The company smiply has too much clout, and can bull its way into anyting it wants. It's past record (and current) on heeding customer or professionals concerns over relaibility, usability, security, etc. point to a company unwilling to listen to the needs and desires of the consunmer. Thanks to prior practices, there is little viable alternatives to M$ in any market it has entered. You use office on you computer, because, well, it is a M$ product. NOT because it was the best, cheapest, or any of the common market reasons.

    A very simplified take on it, but this is it.
     
  7. Brad_W

    Brad_W Screenwriter

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    Isn't it the 20 year prediction that Microsoft is stating that they'll actually own planet Earth and call it, "MS Earth?" That would make it say 2022 = MS Earth.

    Too much money can be a bad thing.
     
  8. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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    Don't know about MS Earth (god I would hate to see the license agreement/fees!), but I am a big fan of Heinlen. He wrote a series of short stories/novellas that eventually were compiled into the work called (I think) A future History. ONe of them was The Man Who Sold The Moon. I would take back just about every bad thing I have cursed on Bill if he would fund manned collonies on Luna.
     
  9. Dean M

    Dean M Agent

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    Okay, I usually just read these posts and don't comment but when it comes to Microsoft...
    This is a thread that everybody should have an opinion on. Even more so than a Bose thread [​IMG]
    Everybody on the Home Theater Forum is probably a little more 'informed' than the average consumer; or should be. The future of our beloved hobby is convergence. This is another step for Microsoft to monopolize that. With the introduction of the X-Box they got into the console gaming arena. But remember, the X-Box is also a convergence product. It is also meant to be a set-top box for broadband applications as well as gaming. This is only X-Box 1 remember.
    Microsoft has just released Windows XP in which the new Windows Media Player initially only supports a proprietary format. Now we have a monopolistic company trying to implement their own standard. What happens down the line when Microsoft pays movie studios to produce Windows media format that are made available before (or even cheaper than) regular DVD titles? Maybe you will start to see titles that are only available on Windows media format!
    To quote a letter from Spencer Kittleson:
    "Microsoft is a marketing and control company par excellence. As shrewd, cunning and inexorably relentless businesspersons the top team at Microsoft is perhaps without modern peer. As for technical skills, they are followers and not leaders. When threatened, they bludgeon their way to success, lying, cheating, coercing and buying their way to a point of control so that they may develop a new revenue stream and control point.
    Microsoft has counted on the plodding, agonizingly slow response of the legal system to never quite be able to catch them in time to undo the damage they have caused or prevent the furtherance of their dominance. This provides a veneer of legitimacy their defenders use to great effect and which is very difficult to counter. More than one pundit who has admitted their huge market distortions has thrown up their hands at a remedy by saying it is just too late to do anything about it. The same goes for the feds. The keystone cops in the DOJ completely botched their early attempt at reigning in Microsoft and it certainly looks like history is about to repeat itself.
    All this time, Microsoft's enormous monopoly derived profits have been used and will be used to entrench themselves ever more deeply into our psyches and systems of communication and commerce, so much so that it will take decades of effort to free ourselves from their ever increasing hegemony. This is an enormous threat to our citizenry.
    ......................
    The increasing level of functional and application tie-in is of great alarm. Microsoft completely missed the beginning of the Internet era and they are now using their new desktop OS to drive uninformed users into giving up their identity to a company which has proven itself unable to secure its own systems. This creates the specter of gross loss of privacy and freedom, not to our government, but to a demonstrably ruthless private company. That a monopoly is now being used to create another monopoly that has knowledge of a great amount of our private and behavioral information is a travesty and abdication of common sense."
    Remember, with Windows XP, X-Box and of their new .Net strategy (as well as Passport) Microsoft is trying to route the Internet through its servers. This includes searches, cookies, preferences and commerce. Calling Microsoft a monopoly for its practices between 1995 -- 2000 is a joke. The Republican government in the U.S. wants to sweep the Microsoft ruling under the rug as they believe it is hurting the economy. They haven't seen anything yet...
     
  10. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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    I just think it's amusing that if any other company was announcing 720p playback at 4x the compression of MPEG2, we'd be drooling. But it's Microsoft, so it's evil.

    I'm no Microsoft apologist, but this talk seems kind of wild-eyed. After all, DVD is a "proprietary" standard, too, in that you've got to pay royalties to use the CSS tech involved. (Or bypass it, which will get you stomped by the DMCA.)

    If 720p Corona video is better than MPEG2, why not move to it? If 5.1/24-bit/96KHz WMA is better than MP3, why not use it? (And "because it's Microsoft" doesn't count.)

    Using MS MPEG4 tech to create the DivX codec was OK (I guess because you could "share" movies and stick it to the man), but if MS wants to use the tech to put better quality video and audio on DVDs, then the sky is falling.

    The thought that support for MPEG2 DVD playback will "disappear" under mysterious circumstances is silly, too. My copy of Word 2000 will open WordPerfect documents. My copy of Excel 2000 opens 1-2-3, Quattro, and dBase files. Including backward compatibility increases your market share, and MS knows that. Microsoft would have no incentive to force such a move.

    They *would* have incentive to try to make new releases use Corona rather than MPEG2, but again, if it's better, why not?

     
  11. Joshua Clinard

    Joshua Clinard Screenwriter

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    I follow the Microsoft issue very closely, on Win Info and I can not understand why there are so many people that get upset when Microsoft develops something new. It is called "innovation." Microsoft has never forced me to buy their software, I do so because they make good products. I don't think their prices are high either. They are a good company, and yes a few of thier policies go a little overboard, but they are changing most of these policies, and they are trying to settle, and they are giving up a lot of things that they shouldn't have to, IMHO. There are many other operating systems available. People do not buy Windows because they are forced to, they buy it because it is the best.
    Sorry to go off topic, but it makes me mad to see so many misinformed people stating thier opinions as fact.
     
  12. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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  13. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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  14. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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  15. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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  16. AaronMK

    AaronMK Supporting Actor

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    We are not talking about the quality of the codec here. We are talking about how M$ will use their control of that codec to wedge thier way to complete control of movie distribution if it is adopted to a certian extent.

    If they have already made deals that will result 90% of future players supporting it, they are a good deal of the way to that adoption needed.

    Based on previous practices, we are far better off if M$ is not part of our movie watching equation. I'd rather wait another five years for the movie industry to adopt its own HD-DVD format or for them to make their own MPEG-4 derivative that would enable HD quality movies on standard DVD.

    Leave M$ out of it. Once they are in the door, they will take control of the house's residents.
     
  17. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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  18. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

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  19. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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  20. Joshua Clinard

    Joshua Clinard Screenwriter

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