Music and movie piracy have been running rampant for the past decade or so, and despite various attempts by record labels and movie studios to put a stop to them, nothing has really caught on just yet. That may change with Apple’s iTunes for the cloud which would allow users to “match” the songs on their hard drives against the ones on iTunes, and for a flat fee of $25 a year, users basically “legalize” their music. A new cloud system called UltraViolet has been formed and it hopes to take the concept similar to the iTunes cloud, but instead of music, it will be for movies.
The Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE) alliance has already approved the first UltraViolet enabled devices and titles which should be set to launch in October.
What UltraViolet does is that versions of the movie, whether it is in DVD or digital format, will be stored in an online “locker”, allowing the user to playback the movie on any of the devices registered to their account. For example if you bought a DVD but you wanted to watch it on your smartphone or tablet, instead of illegally downloading the digital version or ripping it yourself, you can instead opt to get the digital copy of your movie from your “locker” and stream it to your tablet or smartphone.
The “locker” will also provide up to six members of the user’s “family” access to the same videos, and if the user should lose the hard copy of their DVD/Blu-Ray title, they can simply download it again from their account. No word on how much they are planning to charge for access to the UltraViolet cloud, although we’re guessing that price will play a big factor in users deciding if they want to stick to illegal downloads or go for the legal option.