The agreement allows entertainment content owners to benefit from greater distribution flexibility while maintaining rights protection on PCs, digital video recorders and portable media devices. Microsoft and Macrovision will roll out this functionality over the next year.
For the entertainment industry to deliver premium on-demand entertainment in the home, rights must be protected to prevent revenue loss. With about 10 million digital video recorders expected to ship in 2005, a surge in demand for PCs running Microsoft Windows XP Media Center 2005 and broad consumer adoption and use of digital media technologies, Microsoft and Macrovision are working to provide a flexible rights solution that allows the entertainment industry to take full advantage of new usage models for today’s digital home.
“Interoperability is critical to increase content flow to consumer devices,” said Blair Westlake, corporate vice president of the Media/Entertainment & Technology Convergence Group at Microsoft. “With Macrovision and Microsoft’s efforts to support analog copy management, content providers should gain the confidence they need to enhance the rollout of digital video content to PCs and related devices. We believe that this move benefits Hollywood, device makers and consumers.”
Under the agreement, Microsoft’s Windows Media DRM technologies will “recognize” the Macrovision signals, enabling temporary storage (time shifting) on digital devices of Macrovision-protected content received via analog interfaces. Additionally, an Internet-delivered movie, downloaded to a PC, can now be protected on analog video playback out of a PC.
“With the growing popularity of Video-on-Demand and Internet-delivered on-demand entertainment, this agreement is good news for consumers who want more recent movies and other entertainment delivered straight to their homes,” said Steve Weinstein, vice president and general manager, Entertainment Technologies Group at Macrovision. “It also benefits the entertainment industry, which can take advantage of emerging revenue channels while remaining confident their rights are protected.”