Apparently to get deeper into the content providing game, something that wouldn’t hurt the Google TV project, Google just bought Widevine. Like me you probably hadn’t heard of it, but judging soley from Google’s announcement and Widevine’s website, I like where they’re going with this:
So we’re pleased to announce that we’ve agreed to acquire Widevine. The Widevine team has worked to provide a better video delivery experience for businesses of all kinds: from the studios that create your favorite shows and movies, to the cable systems and channels that broadcast them online and on TV, to the hardware manufacturers that let you watch that content on a variety of devices. By forging partnerships across the entire ecosystem, Widevine has made on demand services more efficient and secure for media companies, and ultimately more available and convenient for users.
Can’t find much on this company, no Wikipedia page, heck they don’t even have a favicon.ico, but Widevine’s main product is “a multiplatform, multiformat DRM and video optimization solution that content owners, internet video providers, retailers and video operators can use to deliver a branded, high quality entertainment offering to internet-connected entertainment platforms.” Personally I could live without DRM, especially on my phone, but what good is a platform if it doesn’t support Netflix, right?
Sounds to me like this acquisition could have been precipitated by all those networks blocking Google TV with Google thinking, Well, we could either bend over and let them extort us or we could just go company shopping again. This Widevine outfit is no joke and has alliances and clients of all sorts including AT&T, Best Buy, Blockbuster, DISH, Netflix, Samsung, Toshiba and quite a few more.
I’ve noticed with Google a pattern of buying companies with excitement surrounding the acquisitions and months or years pass without anything materializing from it so I hope they go full throttle with this one. Fun fact: Did you know that thirty five hours of video are uploaded to Youtube every minute? That’s crazy!