Adobe Says Multiple Companies Supporting its New Framework for Building Media Players

Adobe announced Wednesday that over 20 companies are "embracing" its recently announced open framework for building media players (note: for more on the new framework, see the article posted on itvt.com April 21st). The company bills the framework, code-named "Strobe," as helping establish an open industry standard for media players and as offering production-ready software components to streamline the development of custom media players, thus reducing the time content publishers spend creating their own playback technologies. It claims that the framework will enable Flash developers to quickly and easily add rich functionality--including advertising, user measurement and tracking, and integration with social networks--into new custom players that can be branded for individual content owners, without having to code that functionality directly into those players. Since Strobe was announced on April 20th, Adobe says, a line-up of companies that includes Adap.tv, Akamai, blip.tv, Brightcove, CDNetworks, comScore, Digitalsmiths, Eyeblaster, Eyewonder, GlanceGuide, Grab Networks, Incited Media, iStreamplanet, KickApps, Level 3 Communications, Limelight Networks, MTV Networks, Multicast Media, Nielsen, Omniture, Panache, PointRoll, ScanScout, Thumbplay, Visible Measures, and YuMe, have confirmed plans to support Strobe. "By providing all the key components for online video player development, the Strobe framework will drastically save time for media companies who don't want to start the process from scratch," Jim Guerard, VP and general manager of dynamic media at Adobe, said in a prepared statement. "The momentum we're seeing with Strobe demonstrates the real need for an open framework that lets these companies focus on developing, delivering and monetizing content rather than on the nuts and bolts of video player development. We are working closely with leading Flash Media solution providers in the content and video infrastructure space to fast-forward media player development and ensure even more great content can be delivered online."

According to Adobe, Strobe will incorporate media player features found in its Adobe Flash Media Server 3.5 software, including dynamic streaming (to ensure an uninterrupted video viewing experience as network conditions change), "DVR" functionality (allowing viewers to pause and seek within live video), HTTP progressive delivery support, and pluggable support for multiple content-delivery networks. The company also claims that the framework will allow media player developers to incorporate video QoS features within "rich and interactive" experiences for viewers. In addition, it claims that Strobe's architecture provides an extensible platform that allows developers to use only the parts of the framework they need, and to assemble plug-and-play software components from Adobe and third-party vendors.

In other Adobe news: the company says it will later this month (at adobe.com/go/fms_tools) begin offering a free sample piece of code, called DVRCast, that will allow help its customers leverage the DVR-like functionality supported by its Flash Media Server 3.5 platform.

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