Microsoft's implementation of HD DVD?s interactivity layer will be soon promoted on Toshiba HD DVD hardware and Hollywood movies.
In addition, Universal Studios Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Entertainment will include the HDi logo on packaging for HD DVD movie titles beginning in the fourth quarter of this year. HDi technology is Microsoft's implementation of the interactivity layer for the HD DVD format, which offers such advanced features as network connectivity and community scenarios. HDi is also a trademark of Microsoft.
The HDi logo helps consumers identify movies with the interactive experiences HDi offers, including picture in picture viewing and graphical user interfaces that can be exposed while a movie is playing.
As Microsoft's implementation of the mandatory interactive layer in HD DVD, defined as Advanced Navigation by the DVD Forum, HDi began delivering new experiences for consumers when it was launched in April 2006. Early movie titles such as "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift," "Miami Vice" and "Mission: Impossible III" offers interactive HD DVD features ? from picture-in-picture director's commentary to graphical interfaces with tailored movie specifications.
"With Microsoft's HDi technology, Toshiba is able to offer consumers a consistent movie- watching experience in a way that simply isn't possible with today's DVDs or available with any other format right now," said Jodi Sally, vice president of marketing for Toshiba America Consumer Products. "Advanced navigation using Microsoft's HDi technology has been offered on all of Toshiba's HD DVD players - from the models introduced last spring to our third generation of models that are shipping today."
Based on Web standards, HDi provides studios with a familiar and simple development environment. With support for interactivity mandatory on all HD DVD players, HDi allows for advanced features that can be played back on any HD DVD player or drive.
"For studios to truly enhance and change the way people watch movies, HD DVD provides the features and the flexibility we need to offer a personalized experience," said Ken Graffeo, executive vice president of Universal Studios Home Entertainment and co-president of the North American HD DVD Promotional Group. "Web-enabled network features made possible through HDi are particularly compelling because they bridge the gap between physical media and the Web-based world of the MySpace generation."
Studios supporting HD DVD are already delivering on promises of expanding their offerings with Web-enabled network (interactive) features on shipping titles such as "300" and "Blood Diamond" from Warner Bros., "Heroes: Season 1" from Universal and the upcoming "Transformers" from Paramount. The ability to download new trailers, buy ring tones and other merchandise, and share favorite bookmarked scenes with other HD DVD owners are just a few of the features now available on discs from studios supporting HD DVD. Universal recently announced that all day-and-date titles moving forward will include Web-enabled network features powered by HDi.
Microsoft HDi technology powers the interactive capabilities in every stand-alone HD DVD player on the market as well the HD DVD drive for Xbox 360.