|Apple's defiant competition with Microsoft saved QuickTime from the fate suffered by other technologies, like Java, who thought they were partnering with Microsoft and instead ended up being 'embraced and extended' to death. At Apple's acquisition of NeXT, the company found an operating system and management team able to keep up the fight, and Apple unleashed a series of attacks on Microsoft's plans to control the content delivery industry.
Apple began aggressively moving QuickTime into the pro space, rolling out features to impress broadcasters and video professionals. Apple rescued a languishing QuickTime-based non-linear film editing project at Macromedia, led by the former developer of Adobe Premier, and turned it into Final Cut Pro.
Film editors started using Final Cut Pro on the side, simply to harness the magic of QuickTime to convert media documents and churn out quick previsualizations. Four versions later, Apple has an entrenched network of diehard Final Cut editors to compete with industry leader Avid. Apple also acquired Shake developer Nothing Real and Logic developer Emagic, further building upon plans to play in the high end digital production world.
QuickTime has also conquered on the low end, being the key component to a series of consumer applications that take advantage of its magic. QuickTime powers most digital cameras, particularly ones that also capture video and audio clips. Apple's FireWire has been built into every digital camcorder as the standard way to move DV content, and QuickTime makes using DV as easy as using an audio-in jack. Similarly, Apple's own iPhoto, iTunes, iDVD and iMovie enable home users to work with digital media with the ease of a word processor. QuickTime's support for the underlying details enabled Apple's success in quickly rolling out the 'iLife' suite of tools and in introducing iChat/AV for video conferencing.
Part V > D.R.M. or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb