Over a month ago, we wrote an article on the new UltraViolet (UV) system that will be released this summer. We have received new information about the system that corrects older information and answers some questions posed in the previous article.
For a quick review, UV is a cloud-based system that allows customers to access and download purchased movies to multiple devices in various formats. The Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE), which is a large cross-industry initiative that includes 60 major companies in the video production and distribution market, is behind the project. The large commercial backing will hopefully ensure an amount of success even with dissenting opinions within the group.
Now to the new information. It has been confirmed that a household account can consist of six biologically and demographically unrelated people. They do not need to be closely or distantly related family, or living or ever lived at the same residence. In other words, you and five of your best film fanatic friends can share a digital locker. To recap, a digital locker consists of a list of movies that the account has rights to download and access.
While our previous article mentioned that are two main components, there are actually three: digital rights management (DRM), a common file format, and streaming access. The common file format only applies to downloads, while for streaming access, UltraViolet provides the required format required by the device.
To download a movie to a device, the internet-capable device must be registered with UV. Each household account can register up to 12 devices. While this may not sound like a lot of flexibility (only two devices per person), a device does NOT have to be registered for streaming access. Therefore, you could register your desktop and laptop computers, which actually have enough space for a whole library of movies, while you still will be able to stream all your movie to your Blu-ray player, phone, and tablet/iPad.
In essence, the UltraViolet platform will attempt to utilize the buy once, play anywhere concept. For those of you who bought a large VHS collection, only to be replaced by a larger DVD collection, which was then replaced by an even larger Blu-ray collection, those days hopefully will be over….soon…after repurchasing everything in the UV system.