Feeds

Microsoft targets Barmy Army with Silverlight

Broad front, not deep pockets

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Microsoft was embarrassed when Major League Baseball dumped Silverlight, the company's fledging browser-based media player it had signed onto in less than a year.

It was the second blow to Silverlight. NBC - who'd used Silverlight to stream its Olympics coverage - picked Adobe Systems' Flash for its online NFL coverage last autumn rather than Silverlight.

Microsoft's trying to prove Silverlight is ready for business. And a component of that involves winning and keeping big names in the camp against Flash and AIR from Adobe.

Having lost MLB and NBC's football in the US, Microsoft has now flagged up its latest win for Silverlight: cricket on the subcontinent.

Silverlight will be used to broadcast more than 500 hours of live and on-demand video content from the official website of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

The site - IPLT20.com - last year recorded 50.2 million page views, 10 million visits, and five million unique visitors during the course of the six-week season, Microsoft has said.

The goal this season is for 400 million page views, 45 million visits, and 10 million unique visitors. To provide some context, NBC's Olympics coverage on Silverlight pulled in 1.3 billion page views and saw 52.1 million unique visitors.

There's still much to play for in the rich-internet applications market, and Microsoft's still in the race. NBC has said it will use Silverlight to stream next year's Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada.

Early technical problems with Silverlight that saw MLB dump the player may have been solved in its latest edition, Silverlight 3, and Microsoft may have the Winter Olympics, but there's one big problem Microsoft and Silverlight must still overcome: the ubiquity of Flash. Organizations building and selling content will continue to target what's already out there rather than take a chance helping push a new platform.

It's one thing for Microsoft's executives to sign big deals with flagship customers, but there's a gap between this world and the real world of what customers' end users and consumers are using.

Microsoft's done a great deal of work to make it easier to download Silverlight, but download you still must. And much of the content that uses Silverlight still only comes from Microsoft.

Uptake of Silverlight as a medium for building and streaming content is going to rely on more than flagship customers. It's going take slow-and-steady permeation of the player during the next few years on a broad front, rather than pockets of success. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
China: You, Microsoft. Office-Windows 'compatibility'. You have 20 days to explain
Told to cough up more details as antitrust probe goes deeper
Windows 7 settles as Windows XP use finally starts to slip … a bit
And at the back of the field, Windows 8.1 is sprinting away from Windows 8
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?