Microsoft and a dozen other companies announced on Friday two new formats to handle streaming media. With the announcement comes the death of the familiar AVI format, which is used on Windows 95 and NT machines to display videos in a small window. Two new formats are called Advanced Streaming Format (ASF) and Advanced Authoring Format (AAF). ASF, which Microsoft developed with Adobe, Real Networks, and Vivio, handles streaming audio and video, typically for use over a network or the Internet. AAF, which was developed with Adobe, Matrox, and several other companies, is designed for content creators. It's goal is to eliminate the need to convert between various types of multimedia formats.

Microsoft is planning on integrating support for both formats into Windows and Windows NT by 1999. Specifications for the formats is available from the AAF and ASF homepages