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Streaming Media Players on 99 Percent of Home PCs

A recent report from Media Metrix (www.mediametrix.com) points to a discrepancy between the number of home computers with the capability for media play and the actual usage.

Media Metrix 2000 Media Player Focus Report found that 99 percent of home PCs had a media player installed. The percentage was the same for streaming media players.

However, the report found that in November 2000, only 47 percent of U.S. home computer users (both PC and Mac), used a media player, while 40 percent used a streaming media player.

"As a result of aggressive bundling campaigns, media players and streaming media players are now installed on nearly every home PC in the United States, but growth of consumers' usage of them is flattening," said Steve Coffey, executive vice president, Media Metrix. "To close the gap between what people can do and what they actually do, the industry must continue to develop content and better delivery systems that encourage users to take advantage of the digital video and audio capabilities they have.

The report did indicate that home usage of media players slowly, but steadily grew from January 2000 to November 2000 by seven percent.

The report also found that RealNetworks has managed to maintain a lead over Windows Media and Quicktime in home usage. In November 2000, 28 percent of all U.S. home computer users used RealPlayer, 22 percent used Windows Media Player (versions 6 and 7) and four percent used Quicktime (version 4).

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