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Microsoft licenses audio watermarking technology

As part of its ongoing push to get more return on its research and development budget, the software maker licenses out more technology from its research labs.

Microsoft said Wednesday that it has signed a deal to license audio watermarking technology from its research labs to Seattle-based Activated Content.

While watermarking technology is often used as an antipiracy measure, Microsoft said its technology allows companies to add-in other types of content and services into the watermarked audio. One of the big potential applications is adding advertising to streaming media, according to a report on MediaPost.

"We are excited about this agreement with Activated Content because they are uniquely positioned to extend this audio watermarking technology to new emerging applications and we feel great about supporting the development of a company based in our own backyard," said Louis Carbonneau, general manager for the Intellectual Property Licensing Group of Microsoft, in a statement.

The deal is the latest in Microsoft's ongoing effort to license more of its intellectual property. Microsoft cracked open its research labs for tech licensing in 2005.