Nero Multimedia 10 box shotWith improved multimedia handling in Windows 7 and plenty of free options for manipulating video and photos, media software companies have their work cut out persuading consumers to pay extra money for their products.

Nero, with its Multimedia Suite 10 launched on Monday, and Cyberlink, with its PowerDVD 10 are the latest to try. Read more

RealNetworks is piling on the functionality of its RealPlayer software in the face of strong competition for its well known video and audio player.

Apple announced Quicktime X this month, adding editing capabilities to its player. Mozilla’s Firefox 3.5 browser now has the same ability as RealPlayer to download web video. Meanwhile Apple, Mozilla and Google are pursing HTML5 standards that can do away with the need for separate video-playing software and plug-ins. Read more