Long Beach, California - Apple director of QuickTime product marketing Frank Casanova played teacher to the education professionals attending last week's Educause '99 gathering here with a pitch for the power of QuickTime, QuickTime Streaming and QuickTime TV.
In an hour-long presentation called "Transforming Teaching and Learning with QuickTime 4," Casanova explained how to use the software for authoring and distributing video, audio, music, virtual-reality scenes, text, animation and streaming media over the Web.
Touting the software's features, Casanova said QuickTime is the only format that captures, edits, composes, delivers, plays back and archives content for media.
Casanova also said that within four months, documents will be signed that confirm QuickTime's file format as the MPEG4 standard by the International Organization for Standardization (better known as ISO).
Before he launched into demos of QuickTime and QTV, Casanova cited updated statistics on products, downloads and authoring methods.
"Tens of thousands of products have been shipped with QuickTime; more than 100 new titles ship each week and we get one of each of those products" at Apple, Casanova said. "Every week a new company comes and asks to distribute" QuickTime, he added.
Casanova also said there have been more than 18 million downloads of QuickTime from Apple's Web site in the past six months, with 100 million copies of QuickTime in distribution now. QuickTime 4 was released in public beta in April, followed by the final version in June.
"There are 70 million installations of QuickTime on Windows machines," Casanova said, adding that Apple "gets a lot of attention from the Windows world because of QuickTime." He added that QuickTime is downloaded more often than any other software on Apple's Web site.
After people complained about the time it took to download QuickTime, he said, Apple "chopped up the download into 2MB and 5MB portions or a full 8MB download for people who want to get on with their lives."
Casanova compared QuickTime with RealNetworks' RealAudio and RealVideo and said "80 per cent of all videos used on RealNetworks were authored in QuickTime."
A G3 machine can handle more than 2,000 simultaneous connections over a 28.8-Kbps modem, while performing the same feat with RealNetworks' technology would cost administrators $40,000 a year, Casanova claimed.
Casanova said Apple "put two words together: QuickTime and marketing" and "totally retooled the program for QuickTime TV." He touted the network's range of QuickTime content, which comes from BBC, Disney and more than a dozen other channels.
Apple, which uses Akamai Technologies as its network provider for QuickTime and QTV, invested $12.5 million in the company, which integrates QuickTime servers into its network. Apple and Akamai's engineers upgraded Akamai's global content delivery service to support Internet streaming using Apple's QuickTime Streaming Server software, Apple announced at Macworld Expo/New York in July.
Describing the company's expansion plans, Casanova said Akamai - which went public last week - will increase its servers from 1,350 to 3,000 within a year.
Casanova said, "Akamai's servers talk to each other; if one goes down, it gets purged and the other servers pick up the load, with tons of redundancy" built into the system. Apple gets statistics every day on the numbers of people watching QTV and "the statistics are high," Casanova said.
Discussing Apple's virtual-reality software, Casanova said, "You will see more development with QuickTime VR in the next year." QuickTime VR lets users navigate 3D virtual worlds via a mouse, keyboard or other input device and change an image displayed by the QuickTime VR movie controller.
One example of QuickTime VR's use is the fashion industry. Casanova said Jane Barnes, a clothing designer in New York, uses QuickTime VR to make movies of models displaying mens' clothing and moving to show views of the clothing from all sides.
Casanova wrapped up his presentation by saying that education discounts are available for Apple's QuickTime Live! event scheduled for Nov. 8-11 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
Apple offered more than six workshops - including sessions on Final Cut Pro, iMovie and other software - at Educause '99, which ran Oct. 26-29.