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Windows 8 gets Dolby Digital Plus audio support


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Dolby has announced it has signed a deal with Microsoft so that Windows 8 desktops, notebook and tablets can use the Dolby Digital Plus surround sound audio codec.

All Windows 8 hardware will now have audio support provided by one of the most well known companies in the business. Dolby announced today it has signed a deal with Microsoft so that Windows 8 desktops, laptops and tablets will use the Dolby Digital Plus surround sound audio codec. Dolby Digital Plus will be supported for both desktop and Metro-style apps and also for Windows 8 x86 and Windows 8 ARM-based machines.

Tami Reller, Microsoft's Chief Financial Officer and Chief Marketing Officer for Windows and Windows Live, stated in the press release:

With the incredible growth of online download and streaming media, particularly for video content, this agreement ensures a great audio experience for those consumers who wish to download or stream TV and movies containing Dolby Digital Plus. Additionally, all of their existing and future home videos recorded with Dolby Digital Plus audio will work great on Windows 8 right out of the box.

AllThingsD.com reports that Dolby will receive a licensing fee and royalties from PC makers that use Dolby Digital Plus for Windows 8, with a higher royalty rate for PCs that have an optical disc drive. No other financial details about the new deal were disclosed.

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Microsoft to Include Dolby Digital Plus in Windows 8

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Although DVD playback and Media Center will lack from the retail flavors of Windows 8, Microsoft is still focused on providing users with a great audio experience on upcoming tablet and PCs.

For that, the company has selected Dolby Digital Plus technology, so that users would be able to enjoy the playback of Dolby-encoded content on a large number of devices.

According to Dolby Laboratories, Inc., Dolby Digital Plus plays an important role in the delivery of high-quality sound for both online entertainment services and for personal media applications.

“Dolby’s goal is to deliver the best possible entertainment experience, wherever content is delivered through broadcast, broadband, or wireless networks,” said Ramzi Haidamus, executive vice president, sales and marketing, Dolby.

“We are pleased to be working with Microsoft to address the growing demand for high-definition content delivered across a broad range of services and devices.

“Widespread availability of Dolby Digital Plus on Windows 8 will enable more people to enjoy cinematic sound anytime, anywhere, and on any device,” she continues.

Dolby Digital Plus was already incorporated in over 640 million devices, being capable of transforming the entertainment experience that users benefit from.

The technology is recognized as a standard for high-quality audio on products that include smartphones, tablets, PCs, connected TVs, Blu-ray Disc players, and game consoles.

“With the incredible growth of online download and streaming media, particularly for video content, this agreement ensures a great audio experience for those consumers who wish to download or stream TV and movies containing Dolby Digital Plus,” said Tami Reller, chief financial officer and chief marketing officer, Windows and Windows Live, Microsoft.

“Additionally, all of their existing and future home videos recorded with Dolby Digital Plus audio will work great on Windows 8 right out of the box.”

Developers will also be able to take advantage of the inclusion of this technology in Windows 8, through specific APIs for desktop and Metro-style apps, regardless of targeted architectures (desktop or ARM).

All PCs and tablets licensed to run Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro, and Windows RT editions will provide Dolby Digital Plus 5.1-channel decoding and Dolby Digital two-channel encoding.

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