RealNetworks plans to sell iPod compatible songs

“Tomorrow, without Apple’s authorization, RealNetworks will start to give away software that will allow people to buy and download songs from its online music store and then play them on Apple’s popular iPod portable devices in addition to those that use the Windows Media Player format and RealNetwork’s Helix format. […]

So RealNetworks created technology that can create files to be read by iPods.

Mr. Glaser [CEO, RealNetworks] declined to say how it did this.

But Josh Bernoff, an analyst with Forrester Research, said that RealNetworks used a technique known as reverse engineering – observing how Apple’s software behaved as it encoded songs to be loaded onto iPods.”