[CES 2011] Intel Insider is a technology that is being introduced with the Second Generation Core Processor family. It is embedded in the graphics chip inside the new Core i3/i5/i7 processors, and it allows video content to remain protected (from piracy) from its source (disc, hdd, streaming) to the screen (via HDMI, or WiDi 2.0). Thanks to Intel Insider, Movie Studios and TV Networks are now warming up to the idea of making full-HD (1080p) movies and shows available to PC users earlier than ever before. Intel is not a new player in that field as it has created HDCP, a widely used content protection system.
Typically, content producers are very reluctant to distribute their productions in all their glory (digital 1080p) because they fear that pirates would be able to capture the full frames and redistribute illegal copies (well, it’s kind of what’s happening, actually).
If at some point, a video that is encoded an encrypted is decoded and decrypted in order to be processed – you’ve got a potential weak link in the content protection scheme. For example, unencrypted frames living in system memory could be dumped to disk, thus creating unprotected content. The goal is therefore to leave the video stream encrypted until the very end (the display). Although no protection is bullet-proof, the idea is that if it is too complicated or time-consuming to get pirated content, most people would be wiling to pay (a small price?) for it.
CinemaNow, Dixons Retail plc, Hungama Digital Media Entertainment, Image Entertainment, Sonic Solutions, and Warner Bros are among the first studios to make their movies available on the same day than DVD/Blu-Ray. Now, all we have to hope for are decent prices and a good user interface for all those services.
Intel Insider also works with the new version of WiDi (the wireless PC to TV video link) that now works in 1080p.