Windows Media Components License Agreements

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Developing a Windows Media Audio (WMA) or Windows Media Video (WMV) implementation on a non-Windows platform

To get source code for the Windows Media Audio and Video codecs (review the technical details here) and to develop and distribute Interim Products, you must execute the following agreement. Interim Products are Windows Media Components-enabled products that aren't customer-ready (for example, integrated circuits).

After this agreement is executed, you may receive:

  • Advanced Systems Format (ASF) Reader

  • Windows Media Audio 9 Decoder for WMA 9 Series Standard, Lossless, and Voice Codecs and WMA 10 Professional Codec

  • Windows Media Video 9 Decoder for All Profiles and Levels

  • ASF Writer

  • Windows Media Audio 9 Encoder for WMA 9 Series Standard, Lossless, and Voice Codecs and WMA 10 Professional Codec

  • Windows Media Video 9 Encoder for All Profiles and Levels

  • HDCD Consumer Decoding Technology

Fees:

  • There are one-time source code licensing fees for Windows Media components that apply to software or components that are shipped as interim products. Review the sample agreement for exact costs.

  • If no deliverables are elected, licensee will owe a $5,000 licensing administration fee.

  • There are no royalties for distribution of these Interim Products.

Distribution rights:

  • Interim Product Licensees are authorized to ship Windows Media Component implementations to Windows Media Components Final Product Agreement Licensees.

Licensing Process: please review these steps.

Distributing a device or software containing Windows Media Audio (WMA) or Windows Media Video (WMV)

To get object code implementations of the Windows Media Audio and Video codecs (review the technical details here) and to distribute these implementations on a royalty-bearing basis in customer-ready Final Products, you'll need to execute the following agreement. Final Products can be non-Windows software apps or hardware devices.

Fees:

  • $10,000 non-refundable advanced payment of royalties, due upon agreement execution.

  • Per unit royalty and/or Annual Fee Payments. Review the product and royalty schedule in the sample agreement to identify what royalties might apply.

Distribution rights:

  • As a consumer electronics manufacturer or hardware vendor, you can distribute Windows Media-based Final Products such as portable audio and video players, set-top boxes, and mobile devices with audio and video capabilities to consumers.

Licensing Process: please review these steps.

Executing a VC-1 Patent Portfolio License

As you might be aware, WMV-9 from Microsoft conforms to the VC-1 standard. Thus, every company implementing WMV-9 products or content should consider the benefits of executing the VC-1 Patent Portfolio License. The VC-1 Patent Portfolio License, which is the Microsoft-preferred method of licensing the patents in this technology, grants a license to VC-1 essential patents from many companies (including Microsoft) and thus provides additional coverage and value for WMV-9 implementers.

The VC-1 Patent Portfolio is licensed through MPEG-LA, and details on the process to request that license can be found on the MPEG-LA site.

Note: Distributions of Final Products containing implementations of the WMV codec are royalty-bearing, although those royalties are substantially discounted for licensees of the VC-1 Patent Pool.