What Ever Happened To RealPlayer?

July 8th, 2008

Personal Rants

One of my favorite media players when I hooked up my first computer to the Internet was RealPlayer. From streaming radio stations to movies, Real was where it was at. The first version of RealPlayer was introduced in April of 1995 as RealAudio Player which was one of the first media players capable of streaming media over the Internet. But where’s RealPlayer now? In the age of iTunes and iPods, it appears struggling RealPlayer is barely on the radar.

RealPlayer 11 GOLD OS X

Briefly known also as RealOne Player, this once sophisticated application has been blasted with bad press over the years for its resource hogging ways, feature lack support and poor interface. Dominating Windows Media Player and extremely popular iTunes has all but sealed the fate of this media giant in recent years. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the name bought out by someone just to take it off the map entirely.

The only thing RealPlayer has going for it is its scalability. Unlike iTunes or Windows Media Player, you’ll find Real readily available across the board on platforms such as Windows, Mac, Palm, Symbian, Linux/Unix, etc. Real portable but real horrible. Apple should buy them out and re-name it iRealBigPlayer.

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About Richard

Richard is a professional web developer and business consultant. He opened his first web hosting company at the age of 13 out of his bedroom on an ISDN connection and hasn't looked back since. Richard currently resides in sunny Florida.

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6 Responses to “What Ever Happened To RealPlayer?”

  1. Bob

    Memories….wow…absoloutely horrible client software. The things the install did to Windows machines were borderline criminal. The uninstall was even worse. Was just thinking of horrible technologies this morning to use as an example for a presentation. So, naturally, I searched on Real Player. I won’t blame the developers…there was obviously some sick product manager that said “let’s write a virus and call it a media player – we can own the users OS and take over the world”. I truly lost days of my life trying to recover from the mess the installs had made of my family’s computers. Good riddence to that PoS product!! May it burn in hell…

  2. Doug P

    I had a good collection of tracks that cost me 99 cents per track. One day real player told me to update. After I did it wouldn’t play the tracks i had purchased through their system for real player. I emailed, phoned, wrote letters, and never did get my music back, I wish i could remember what they were calling themselves :real networks ” or some such drivel. The chance of me buying anything from real networks is about the same as me trying to stick butter up a wildcats ass with a hot poker. Fool me once shame on you. Aint fooling me twice ,


  3. me

    As a network admin for a largely Mac environment for a major city newspaper, Real Player was a major PITA. I have no pity for them, they made it very difficult for us to keep up to date, and often simply did not work on our state of the art Macs. They never answered a single email or call from me over 5 years. Dumped and forgotten, they deserve to be so.

  4. ad

    what has happen to real player now. it was amazing i could stream and record clips from myspace of my favorite artists now. nothing cant download them at all. such high hopes. dashed. rubbish my hatred for real player has returned.

  5. Richard

    Do you think RealPlayer will ever grace the face of an iPhone?

  6. Lacy Kemp

    RealPlayer is still here. In fact the latest edition of RealPlayer tries to fight back against all of the bad press. It’s a tough mountain to climb though. We have a bit of a tarnished reputation to overcome and we’re doing the best we can to do just that. RealPlayer 11 was released last year to a lot of good and a bit of bad press. The good reviews focused on the ability of RP11 to download video directly to your PC. We complied with DRM and made sure those videos with DRM were not downloadable. We also listened to customer requests and tried to incorporate as many changes as possible. We are constantly working to make the experience better for the users.