Microsoft sells its stake in RealNetworks

RealNetworks has downplayed Microsoft's decision to sell its minority stake in the company, saying it had expected the move for some time.

"Beginning last spring, it became clear that the two companies' business strategies were not aligned," RealNetworks said in a statement released yesterday, one day after Microsoft announced that it was selling its 10 per cent stake in the maker of the RealPlayer streaming media player.

Just like Microsoft, RealNetworks in its statement made no reference to the public falling out between the companies. In July of this year, RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser testified before the US Senate Judiciary Committee that Microsoft intentionally "broke" his company's RealPlayer G2 software.

While pledging that the company would continue to make its products "work well" with the Microsoft Windows family of operating systems and its Internet Explorer Web browser, Glaser also said in today's statement that Microsoft's move further validates the importance of the streaming media market.

"We're very pleased with our continued 85 per cent market share of streaming media Web pages, growth from 12 million to 38 million users, and 100 per cent revenue growth over the past year. Microsoft's action is further validation of the importance and tremendous potential of the streaming media market," the statement said.

"In the past three and a half years, there have been many competitors in the streaming media market including Microsoft. We have continued to dramatically grow our business and deliver the products most people choose to standardise on," the statement added.

In an interview with CNBC today, Glaser also said that RealNetworks "may soon" face heightened competition from Microsoft, but that it is likely "to be a difference in degree, not kind".

"They've tried to compete with us for a couple of years now," Glaser said in the CNBC interview. He added that RealNetworks' increasing focus on networked streaming media will provide the company with an advantage in the market, which has become a "pure software game".

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Torsten Busse

PC World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill


I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?