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Sonic, Widevine Announce USB Venture

23 Jul, 2009 By: Chris Tribbey

Sonic Solutions and digital technology company Widevine have announced their own venture with USB flash memory devices with the aim of delivering premium movies on CinemaNow USB Movie Drives by the end of 2009.

The July 23 announcement does not include any specific titles or content providers who have agreed to have their content delivered on the system. The USB drives would include “Hollywood-approved digital rights management,” an integrated media player and the video codecs needed to play content on PCs.

CinemaNow subscribers could use the USB drives to also watch the content on up to four CinemaNow-compatible devices, including connected HDTVs and Blu-ray Disc players.

“Our technologies are helping to ensure consumers get the Hollywood new releases they want, along with the playback flexibility they crave,” said Widevine CEO Brian Baker. “The CinemaNow USB Movie Drives will be an ideal solution for Netbook and mobile-phone manufacturers that want to enhance and differentiate their product offerings with premium entertainment.”

Sonic aims to have the first drives available at retail during the fourth quarter and is working on bundling agreements with mobile-phone and laptop manufacturers.

“Teaming with industry leaders such as Widevine is allowing us to overcome the technical hurdles of digital rights management and platform optimization behind the scenes, so all the consumer experiences is convenient, hassle-free entertainment viewing,” said Sonic CEO and president Dave Habiger.

MOD Systems is also working on content delivery with USB drives. Their kiosk system would offer more than 4,000 films when it launches as planned later this year.

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