Intel snaps up RealNetworks

Intel has closed a $120 million deal with RealNetworks to buy hundreds of audio and video patents and applications , as well as buying into Real’s future video codec software. RealNetworks will retain the rights to use these patents in upcoming products of its own, if any.

At a time in which RealNetworks IP should have rocketed the company to the forefront of mobile content streaming… it hasn’t. The company stock has slowly but surely been slipping and has dropped to half of its October 2010 value, a sign that the company has made very little progress in the booming market of mobile content.

Intel, which is looking to improve its position in mobile content streaming, thereby increasing its odds in the biz, gains has access to the Helix Media Framework, the underlying foundation that powers RealNetworks’ codecs across a range of platforms. It also becomes a licensor towards several mobile manufacturers.

RealNetworks will now have to make a choice, either it becomes a leading software design company or it is snuffed out by the ensuing lack of revenue streams. This may cause a spin-off of its GameHouse mobile gaming division that supplies the company with much of its revenue today.