Thursday, December 2, 2010

Google to Acquire Widevine for Video DRM and Optimization

Google has agreed to acquire Widevine, a privately-held company that specializes in digital rights management (DRM) and video optimization tools. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Widevine's suite of video optimization tools leverage adaptive stream and QoS controls to match Internet video quality to a consumer's available bandwidth. Widevine's multiplatform DRM provides the capability to license, securely distribute and protect playback of multimedia content on any consumer device. Key customers include AT&T, Best Buy, Blockbuster, Deutsche Telekom, DISH Network, LOVEFiLM, Netflix, Telstra, VUDU and leading consumer electronics companies. For instance, Telstra's BigPond TV recently started delivering linear broadcast television channels over the Internet using Widevine's live adaptive streaming, virtual DVD experience and digital rights management (DRM) platform. Widevine is based in Seattle.

Google said it is committed to maintaining Widevine's agreements and will provide direct, quality support for their existing and future clients. Google also plans to build upon Widevine's technology to enhance both Widevine's products and its own.

Google noted that it is now getting 2 billion views per day on YouTube.

  • Widevine was founded in 1999 and is funded by Constellation Ventures, Cisco Systems, Charter Ventures, Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. (DNP), Pacesetter Capital Group, The Phoenix Partners, TELUS and VantagePoint Venture Partners.

  • Widevine is headed by Brian Baker, founder and CEO. Its technical team is led by Glenn Morten, Executive Vice President of Engineering and Chief Technology Officer; and Dr. Jeremy Horwitz, Vice President of Security Research and Co-founder.