An industry standards group has made a preliminary decision to include Microsoft's video compression technology in a next-generation DVD format, giving the company a key boost in the digital media arena.

The steering committee for the DVD Forum on Friday announced provisional approval for Microsoft's VC-9 and two other video technologies--H.264 and MPEG-2--as mandatory for the HD-DVD video specification for playback devices. VC-9 is the reference title for the underlying video decoding technology within Windows Media Video 9. The approval is subject to several conditions, including an update in 60 days of licensing terms and conditions.

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