QuickTime chief queries MS standards tactic

Apple's QuickTime chief Frank Casanova has criticized Microsoft's move to transform its proprietary Windows Media 9 multimedia software into a standard, telling Macworld that "when you are part of a standards organization you don't develop it behind closed doors". QuickTime marketing director Casanova spoke with Macworld at Europe's broadcast industry event IBC. In early September, Microsoft submitted its Windows Media 9 a/v codec to the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) for review and ratification of its software as a standard

On the move, Casanova said: "It is interesting to see how Microsoft has decided to follow our lead in supporting open standards by submitting Windows Media 9 technology as a standard. Microsoft must open up its technology to expand out of the proprietary and into the standards-driven industry." Casanova believes Microsoft has not frozen development of its software while waiting for ratification: "Do you think for a second that Microsoft will stop working on WM9? I don't think so. So suddenly you've got two standards, and the company will continue to evolve its own version. That's not what we are doing."

Behind closed doors

Casanova is critical of Microsoft's approach to standards development: "When you are part of a standards organization you don't develop it behind closed doors, you do it in complete conjunction with all the companies involved in that standard. That's how a standard is born, not by one company, but with dozens working together. That's not the way Microsoft is working, and it will be interesting to see if this tactic will be successful for it in the long run if it does not work that way."

News source: Macworld | UK

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