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RoxioNow Headed to iPad, iPhone, Blackberry

5 Aug, 2010 By: Chris Tribbey

Sonic Solutions’ RoxioNow video service could be available for iPhones, iPads, Blackberrys and Android smartphones by the end of the year, thanks to an agreement with digital rights management and streaming technology company Widevine.

RoxioNow is currently available on mobiles that run Windows Mobile Operating System, including several made by Samsung, as well as portable devices that are DivX certified. This agreement will allow retailers, including Best Buy and Blockbuster, to offer RoxioNow on popular mobile devices from Apple and Google.

In 2008 RoxioNow, then known as CinemaNow, partnered with Widevine to have RoxioNow embedded on connected HDTVs, PCs, Blu-ray Disc players and other set-top boxes. More than 14,000 feature-length films and TV episodes are available on RoxioNow.

“It’s a big deal,” said Mark Ely, EVP of Sonic Solutions. “For a movie service, consumers want flexibility, and the ability to move their content from the digital living room to mobile devices, regardless of the platform. The platform shouldn’t matter.”

Ely said teaming with Widevine allows Sonic to overcome the technical hurdles of digital-rights management and platform optimization behind the scenes, eliminating the hassle for consumers.

“With the new mobile support, we continue to build out an open, multimanufacturer ecosystem of ‘movie-enabled’ devices and allow our partners to touch more consumers in more places,” he said.

Widevine CEO Brian Baker said the partnership will allow RoxioNow to “deliver an unbelievable mobile movie experience to the latest range of next-generation handsets.”

Ralph Schackart, analyst with William, Blair & Company, said the agreement would likely lead to an application branded by Sonic’s retail partners such as Kmart, Best Buy and Blockbuster that will run Sonic’s digital locker on the 40 million-plus mobile devices.

“We believe this agreement was driven by the studios and is an early indication the studios are going to open up ‘walled gardens,’ starting with Apple,” he wrote in a note to investors.

Ely said that the next step for RoxioNow is integration into every connected gaming device. He said new announcements along those lines could come this fall.


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