RealNetworks Announces RealOne OpenPass - The Marketplace for Content Owners To Reach Online Consumers Via Subscription

00:00:00 - 22 May 2003

SEATTLE, May 22, 2003 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- RealNetworks(R), Inc. (RNWK) today announced RealOne(TM) OpenPass, a marketplace that enables owners of digital media content to sell their content to consumers via subscription. By expanding the reach and reducing the costs of online subscription businesses and by connecting content owners with the massive user base of the RealOne Player, RealOne OpenPass makes it possible for media companies of all sizes to increase revenue through paid Internet services. Because some of these services contain content that may not be appropriate for all ages, RealNetworks also today announced significantly expanded parental controls for RealOne Player for subscription content.

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"With more than one million subscribers to our content services, we are often asked by content owners how they can tap into our broad reach," said Merrill Brown, senior vice president, RealOne Services, RealNetworks, Inc. "As an open platform for content owners, and a market for consumers to find content, RealOne OpenPass brings together the important components that content providers need to leverage our success."

Twenty-one brands have already signed up for RealOne OpenPass, including:

-- Playboy.com's Playboy TV Club: Showcases the best of Playboy TV's original and exclusive programming in an interactive user-driven environment. Subscribers to the Playboy TV Club can select their own rich media playlists and view hours of programming from Playboy TV's hottest shows.

-- Motor Trend: Exciting auto coverage, including road tests, exclusive features and Motor Trend TV. View behind-the-scenes video, programs such as "Car of the Year," "1 Year Test Update," web interviews, and special reports from all the auto shows, all on-demand.

-- Sporting News Radio: The nation's #1 sports talk radio network offers big name interviews, expert analysis, and full show archives from its leading lineup of sports talk talent, including Troy Aikman, Phil Jackson, James Brown, Tim Brando, Papa Joe Chevalier, Chet Coppock and more.

-- Professional Bowlers Association: Live coverage of the best bowlers in the world. Catch exciting PBA Tour elimination match play, player interviews, behind-the-scenes during the PBA majors, special features on touring players, and on-demand video from quarterfinals to the ESPN finals telecasts.

The full list of RealOne OpenPass partners can be found at: http://www.real.com/partners/openpass/ .

"We are excited to be included in RealOne's OpenPass marketplace," said Randy Nicolau, president of Playboy.com, Inc. "Our subscription revenues are the largest component of our online business and we believe that distribution via OpenPass will enable us to expand the reach of these products to a new audience."

"As part of RealOne OpenPass, we've partnered with the leader in paid content offerings and have been able to generate new revenue," said Michael Calderon, Director of Internet Radio for Sporting News Radio. "We are also able to market our product to RealNetworks' large existing user base and work with RealNetworks on exciting projects to distribute Sporting News Radio content across new platforms."

RealOne OpenPass Leverages Success of RealOne Subscription Service

RealNetworks has pioneered the subscription business for online media content, and recently announced it has surpassed one million subscribers to its paid content services. Built on the same technology and marketing platform used for these services, RealOne OpenPass was launched as a pilot program last summer; since that time, RealNetworks has attracted a critical mass of content providers and subscribers, and delivered a range of technology and services to launch the RealOne OpenPass marketplace to the broadest range of content providers by providing:

-- Reach and Distribution, including reaching the massive installed base of the RealOne Player users and premium services subscribers.

-- Content Delivery. RealOne OpenPass provides customer registration and management, payment processing, billing systems, and content security. Providers have the option of hosting their content at RealNetworks' Real Broadcast Network (RBN) or at a certified third party hosting service.

-- Service Operation. Online reporting and end-user customer support from RealNetworks reduces maintenance costs for content providers.

Content owners can easily leverage RealNetworks' unparalleled expertise in selling digital media subscription services by joining the RealOne OpenPass network of providers today. To find out more about the RealOne OpenPass marketplace and contact an account manager to launch a subscription service suited to the provider's business goals, content catalog, and target market, visit: http://www.realnetworks.com/openpass/ .

New Parental Controls for RealOne Player

The new parental controls capabilities in RealOne Player enable the user to restrict access to RealOne subscription content based on the age of the viewer. To help parents monitor and limit their child's access to certain programming, the parental controls -- once initially set up -- will prompt for a password at two different ratings levels: when content is not suitable for children under 18 as well as when content is not suitable for children under 14. To initially configure the parental controls, users will need to input a credit card number to verify the user's age. Some content will require that parental controls be configured in the RealOne Player to enable viewing of the content.

About RealNetworks

RealNetworks, Inc. is the leading global provider of network-delivered digital audio and video services and the creator of the technology that enables digital media creation, distribution and consumption. Consumers use RealNetworks' RealOne Player and our content subscription services to create and play free and premium digital content. Broadcasters, network operators, media companies and enterprises use RealNetworks' products and services to deliver digital media to PCs, mobile phones and consumer electronics devices. Consumers can access and experience audio/video programming and download RealNetworks' consumer software at http://www.real.com . RealNetworks' systems and corporate information is located at http://www.realnetworks.com .

NOTE: RealNetworks, RealOne, RealOne Player, OpenPass, SuperPass and Real Broadcast Network are trademarks or registered trademarks of RealNetworks, Inc.

SOURCE RealNetworks, Inc.


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