Microsoft Invests in Heavily-Backed HD Online Video Service Move Networks

So Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) is also jumping into the online video investment space, and has done an undisclosed amount of strategic investment in already-heavily backed online HD video tech provider Move Networks. This is technically part of its third round, when it earlier closed $46 million from investors such as Benchmark Capital, as well as *Cisco*, *Comcast*Interactive Media, and Televisa. Prior to Microsoft coming in, the American Fork, UT-based company had raised $67.3 million in funding.

The company touts a higher level of quality than other video providers, including HD, and it claims to be able to eliminate buffering. Among its customers are ABC and *ESPN*, both Disney (NYSE: DIS) properties (hence it also has backing from Steamboat, a Disney VC fund)…it recently announced it was going to adapt its HD media player for mobile Internet devices (or MIDs) using Intel (NSDQ: INTC) processors and Linux software. Move is already in crazy-money-raised territory, and this one adds to it.

Microsoft has been pushing its Silverlight online video technology. It was recently integrated within Move’s technology, even though it was not used in’s video player, which was all Silverlight. With this Microsoft investment, Move will support Windows Server-based encoding, Microsoft codecs and Silverlight DRM.

If you want to see a brand new example of the integration of the two, check out the official video from Democratic convention coverage here…as usual, you have to download and install the small Move plugin.