Today, RealNetworks (NSDQ: RNWK) has relaunched one of its oldies, but goodies: The RealPlayer.
The new media player is in line with the Seattle company’s objective to make its current products more attractive as it beefs up its essentially nonexistent pipeline. To that end, the latest version of the RealPlayer is being repositioned as a product for mobile, by helping you transfer content between the phone and PC.
RealNetworks is not in an envious position. The Seattle-based company is only starting to rebound after its new CEO Bob Kimball led a period of deep job cuts and a realization that it had to make due with what its got while it can build new products and services.
If there’s a good example of making due with what you’ve got, it’s the new RealPlayer. The free application, which is available in beta, will let consumers move photos, videos and music across a wide range of devices — a task that even Google (NSDQ: GOOG) or BlackBerry doesn’t make simple on the handset.
In this version, users will have to tether their device to the computer to transfer content, but eventually, the product is expected to support wireless syncing. RealNetworks promises an easy process that includes connecting the device and clicking once to download and transfer. It will automatically take a lot of hassles out of the experience, including handling conversions and file types. For instance, it can assist in downloading a video from YouTube, and then converting it to an appropriate file size for your iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry or other device. Next month, an upgrade for $39.99 that will include accelerated video downloading and advanced CD and DVD burning capabilities.
In a release, Peter Kellogg-Smith, VP at RealNetworks, said: “Most people today have a mounting collection of videos, photos and music piling up across their computers, mobile devices and smart phones, and sometimes, this content doesn’t even make it off those devices.”
RealNetworks is not alone in trying to solve this problem, but it has the advantage of having real users. Over the past year, RealPlayer has been downloaded more than 140 million times and has been used to download over 1 billion videos. Other companies solving this problem span the wireless ecosystem, including handset-makers, operating system-makers, carriers, and third-party startups.