MP3 Grows Up
Everybody is rushing to bring a digital audio player to marketwith Sony and Audiovox the recent entrants at press time. Meanwhile, the licensing of ARIS Technology's digital watermark for a music copy protection scheme has yet to be settled, possibly thwarting the industry goal of having the standard finalized for product shipped in December.
Those specifications set by the Secure Digital Music Initiative (SDMI), a group of recording industry and technology companies, will affect portable digital music players and PCs, expanding next year to the entire music food chain.
"We are making progress, but we're not quite finished yet," said Jim Burger, the Washington, D.C., attorney who represents a large group of computer and on-line companies in the SDMI forum. "There doesn't appear to be any technology issues outstanding. Individual companies, however, need to consider whether the overall ARIS proposal, technology and licensing terms and conditions are acceptable."