RealNetworks, which a year ago at Cannes could point to one handset deal with Nokia and an infrastructure agreement with Ericsson, returned this year with 26 European operators on its partner list, as well as a range of new handset partners.
Real, whose Helix mobile platform and RealPlayer mobile client software competes with Windows Media and PacketVideo in the content delivery space, credits its June 2003 win with Vodafone for the range of customers coming on board over the past six months.
Operators including 02, TelefÃ³nica MÃ³viles EspaÃ±a, Telecom Italia Mobile, TMN, WIND and TeliaSonera have installed the Helix platform, Real’s product family which includes server, mobile gateway, content producer and delivery suite — as well as the RealPlayer — for the streaming of content over mobile networks.
On the handset side Real has announced a partnership with SonyEricsson, formerly a PacketVideo partner, to incorporate its player in SonyEricsson’s media phones, alongside its 3GPP version.
Real also has agreements with Motorola for its Linux phones, Nokia for its Series60 handsets, on the Siemens SX1 and Sendo X. The player is also on Palm OS based devices from Treo and Palm, and is the standard player on the Openwave Phone Tool v7 platform.
General manager of mobile products and services at RealNetworks, Lee Joseph, said that the Vodafone deal had helped in two main ways.
First was that in producing a platform to Vodafone’s specification, other operators could be confident that the product had been rigorously tested and proven.
The second was that Vodafone could bring its muscle to bear to lean on handset manufacturers to incorporate RealPlayer Mobile.