Starting 1st of November Fluendo will be dedicating a resource to implementing a full featured GStreamer backend for Phonon, the multimedia API for KDE4.
The goal is to make the best backend for Phonon possible in order to demonstrate the qualities of GStreamer to the KDE community and hopefully lessen the chance of fragmentation in the free software multimedia space. This work is done in cooperation with a major industry player who shares our goal of providing the Linux and Unix communities with a unified multimedia API. I let them let announce their name themselves due to contractual reasons, but I do expect to see them talking publically about this at some point as it is quite direct follow-on to already announced efforts they are doing to bring more unity the free desktop under the auspices of the Portland project and the LSB.
As some of you know I have personally voiced reservations on Phonon in the past, and while I still think some of my concerns are valid, I hope that this effort can be a starting point for a more productive exchange of ideas. If we manage to make the GStreamer backend as good as we hope to then it would be a big step forward in resolving the worries some KDE developers have voiced about the readiness of GStreamer and maybe even encourage the development of a full set of Qt-style binding to GStreamer to suplement to the high level objects of Phonon.
I also hope is that this work will be a big step towards making users life much easier, as it will allow distributions to ship GStreamer plugins that enable proprietary codecs, and know that no matter if the user uses a GNOME/GTK or KDE/QT application the user will get access to these formats (at least as soon the licensing of applications are sorted out ;).