Apple released public previews of QuickTime 5 and QuickTime Streaming Server 3 – the next generations of Apple’s industry-leading software for creating, streaming and playing high-quality audio and video over the Internet – at the QuickTime Live conference yesterday.
New features of QuickTime 5’s include an updated media player with a new QuickTime TV (QTV) network channel display and new audio controls; a new component downloader for adding plug-ins on the fly; and support for new Web codecs including Macromedia Flash 4, Cubic VR and Shoutcast.
In combination with the new open-source QuickTime Streaming Server 3, QuickTime 5 also now provides ‘Skip Protection’ – a collection of Apple-invented technologies that ensures a higher quality experience for watching and listening to Internet streams. Skip Protection protects against media skipping or frame dropping, caused by the unpredictability of Internet transmissions.
"QuickTime is the standard for Internet audio and video and is being used to deliver the latest in Internet content to millions of surfers around the world," said Philip Schiller, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing.
"The new technologies in QuickTime 5 enable a new generation of Web-based audio and video solutions delivered with greater reliability than ever before."
Other new features in version 5 include:
- Hot Picks guide highlighting cool, new QuickTime TV content
- support for Sorenson Video 3
- easy developer support for delivering new user interfaces
- an improved digital video codec for improved iMovie playback performance
- real-time professional video editing support for professional applications such as Apple’s Final Cut Pro.
Leading Web developers whose technologies take advantage of the new component download feature include:
- DDD, which takes existing video and encodes it in 3-D for viewing with 3-D glasses;
- Pulse 3D, which provides playback of low-bandwidth 3D interactive animations;
- BeHere, which delivers 360-degree streaming and on-demand video;
- Sealed Media, which allows content developers to "seal" their media and set up digital rights
- Management (DRM) solutions for streaming live or on-demand content;
- On2, which provides high-quality broadband video, encoding and playback; and
– iPIX, which makes virtual reality software that provides dynamic imaging solutions for creating 360-degree spherical images and movies.
The public previews of QuickTime 5 for the Macintosh
and QuickTime Streaming Server 3 are available immediately for download from www.apple.com/quicktime and www.apple.com/quicktime/servers, respectively. A preview of QuickTime 5 for Windows will be available by the end of the year. QuickTime 5 and QuickTime Streaming Server 3 will be available in early 2001.
Schiller also previewed a future version of Final Cut Pro that takes advantage of real-time video-editing capabilities provided by QuickTime 5. The feature allows producers to add transitions and other effects without the need for rendering.