RealNetworks will build an open source media player, to give Linux, Unix and Solaris users the same media playback and support capabilities available from the company's RealOne Player for Windows and Mac systems.
The project will be taken on by the Helix community of developers. Real introduced Helix last year as both a community and platform for the standardisation of digital media. Since then, it has released source code for the server, client and producer portions of its media delivery system.
With Helix, Real is aiming to propagate the use of a multiformat system rather than a proprietary approach like that taken by Microsoft with its Windows Media format.
The open source player will be built on top of the cross-platform media engine Helix DNA client, and will have binaries for RealAudio and RealVideo.
Early versions of the player will be built for the open source Linux OS and for Solaris, Sun Microsystem's version of Unix.
Real said that it expected the first usable release of the player to be delivered next quarter.
Scarlett Pruitt writes for IDG News Service