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Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Samsung Embraces Ultraviolet With "Disc to Digital" Feature In Smart Blu-ray Players


Today, at the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE) UltraViolet press event, Samsung announced plans for a "Disc to Digital" feature on Samsung Smart Blu-ray players, developed by Flixster and Rovi.

Available later this year, Disc to Digital will allow consumers to add their existing Blu-ray Disc and DVD libraries from participating studios to their UltraViolet digital library, making them viewable on a wide range of devices.

Disc to Digital can work with any authorized retail service and will initially be available using a new Flixster application on Samsung?s Smart Hub. Flixster is Warner Bros.'s online movie service, and is installed on devices such as flat-panel TVs and Blu-ray players that connect to the Internet. Flixster gives consumers access to all of the movies they have stored in their UltraViolet lockers, even if they come from another participating studio.

When consumers insert an eligible physical disc into a 2012 Samsung Blu-ray player and select the Disc to Digital icon, they will launch the Flixster application and can add the movie to their UltraViolet locker for a nominal amount. If high definition versions are available, they will have the option to upgrade their standard definition movies for an additional fee.

Once digital copies have been created and added to the consumer's UltraViolet collection, the content will be available to enjoy through the Flixster Smart Hub application on Samsung's Smart Hub, as well as a broad range of mobile and portable devices such as iPhones, iPads and Android-based devices as well as PCs and Macs. UltraViolet also allows consumers to share their entire UltraViolet digital library with other members on their account, and they can even watch the same title simultaneously from different locations.

Flixster will also be available this year on Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players. Through the application, users will be able to access and stream their UltraViolet movie and TV show collections directly on their TVs.

Disc to Digital uses Rovi Digital Copy Solution, which integrates into consumer electronics devices as well as PC applications to allow them to recognize a movie on a physical disc, authenticate its origin, and then trigger access to a copy from a cloud-based digital library.

UltraViolet adoption so far

Following the launch of an initial 19 UltraViolet-enabled titles, more than 750,000 households have registered with UltraViolet to create and start using personal digital libraries, according to data released by The Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE) LLC at CES.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Universal Studios Home Entertainment and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group will release hundreds of additional UltraViolet-enabled titles in 2012, including new releases, catalog and TV titles.

UltraViolet-enabled DVDs and Blu-rays are currently for sale in retail locations across the U.S. and UK. Sony Pictures, Universal and Warner Bros. estimate that hundreds of millions of their DVDs and Blu-rays bundled with UltraViolet rights will hit U.S. shelves in 2012.

Additionally, Paramount Home Media Distribution recently announced that the January 24th U.S. release of "Paranormal Activity 3" will be UltraViolet-enabled. Additional studios are expected to begin offering UltraViolet-enabled titles in the near future as well.

Amazon.com has also signed a deal with a Hollywood studio to sell movies that can be downloaded from an online "locker" system five studios have put together.

In the first half of 2012, DECE plans to introduce a Common File Format for downloads, making download functionality consistent across all UltraViolet retailers.

DECE also plans to begin UltraViolet roll-out in Canada in the coming months, as well as a number of other territories in 2012 and 2013.


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