Intel and Panasonic step up fight against music piracy

Music piracy software solutions are to be announced Wednesday by Intel and Panasonic

US technology firm Intel and US electronics giant Panasonic announced plans to combat music piracy Tuesday.

The two companies have codeveloped software designed to protect copyrighted music held on personal computers and to securely transfer it to portable devices. The companies plan to release the software solutions Wednesday.

Intel and Panasonic -- the US wing of Japanese firm Matsushita -- say that the software products "exceed" the requirements established by the Secure Digital Music Initiative (SDMI). The SMDI was created by over 150 music and technology industry companies in order to provide solutions to digital music piracy.

The announcement highlights the industry's concern over piracy in light of the legal controversy surrounding MP3 file-sharing company Napster. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) sued Napster in December for allegedly facilitating mass online music piracy.

"Intel's patented tamper-resistant software is key to achieving SDMI compliance," says general manager of Intel Internet Security Services, Parvinder Kohli. "We're enabling consumer electronics manufacturers and PC music jukebox application vendors to easily create SDMI-compliant platforms for delivering music to consumers."

The software will securely transfer audio files to SD Memory Card-based devices. Panasonic already offers two compliant devices in Japan.

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