MS floats unified streaming format

Microsoft Corp. and four partners today released an updated entrant for a new streaming audio and video format, called Advanced Streaming Format.

Backing the proposed standard were Progressive Networks Inc., Intel Corp. and Adobe Systems Inc. ASF would have to be accepted over competing streaming technologies backed by Oracle Corp., Netscape Inc. and others.

Microsoft, which invited comment on ASF from the industry, said the format will increase choice of available production tools, boost the number of Internet broadcasts available and improving quality. The final version of ASF is scheduled to be released on Sept. 30.