DreamStream announced this week that it has been chosen by Royal Digital Media (RDM) to encrypt its new optical media format. While not much is known about this format, DreamStream's press release states that it will offer 100GB of storage capacity, allowing it to hold four hours of video at 1920p resolution. Best of all, players and discs are expected to be priced "equal those of the traditional DVD format."
DreamStream has signed on to encrypt Royal Digital Media's new optical media format. The agreement will allow RDM to employ DreamStream's military-strength encryption in the copyright protection of their high-definition discs.
The deal marks the first time a military-grade encryption has been implemented in the copyright protection of commercial motion picture discs.
"DreamStream and RDM's technologies align perfectly, as they both rest exponentially beyond the standards currently being employed," said DreamStream's Chief Development Officer Ulf Diebel, in a statement issued at the signing in Paris.
DreamStream is the first company to implement a 2,048-bit encryption in consumer media. AES encryption, used in Sony's Blu-ray discs, relies on only a 128-bit system.
In 2006, a hacker known as "Muslix64" defeated Blu-ray's encryption. Since that time, Sony's system has been faced with continual security breaches and tremendous losses due to piracy.
RDM has developed a high-definition system that exceeds the capabilities of Blu-ray. RDM's technology offers storage capacity for up to 100 GB on a single disc. Blu-ray discs can only hold 50 GB of data. Due to RDM's increase in storage capacity, their system is able to offer display qualities that greatly exceed conventional, 1080p, high-definition.
"RDM's format will transform perceptions of high-definition," said Diebel. "RDM's system is able to display the next generation of high-definition: 1920p. With this advancement in technology, true digital cinema will soon be a widespread reality."
For consumers, RDM's increase in storage capacity allows for a single disc to hold approximately four hours of video content at 1920p resolution.
Because RDM's system is based on inexpensive red laser technology, their players are expected to sell for much less than Sony's, which routinely sell for hundreds of dollars. The high price of Blu-ray players has been credited for the technology's slow public reception.
The retail prices for RDM's players and discs are expected to "equal those of the traditional DVD format, greatly undercutting Blu-ray," said Diebel.
"The mission of RDM is to replace traditional DVD technologies with a comprehensive, next generation HD system," said Eugene Levich, RDM's chief executive officer. "The industry's problem, which Sony has been unable to solve with Blu-ray, is how to transition into HD without destroying the existing DVD industry or gouging the pocketbooks of consumers. We have the solution and can solve this without having to drastically overhaul the entire infrastructure of DVD production."
RDM's technology can be implemented into existing DVD production processes through the integration of a proprietary software and firmware system. The only potential hardware modification is, "at most, the simple replacement of a single chip," said Levich. As such, existing DVD manufacturers will be able to integrate RDM's technology with only minor modifications to their production processes.
RDM's players are backwards compatible and able to read traditional CDs and DVDs. Moreover, an innovation in data processing enables RDM's players to "drastically enhance the playback quality of regular DVD content," said Diebel.
The incorporation of DreamStream's encryption into RDM's system will thwart the piracy of digital content. The content of RDM's discs will only be able to be read by RDM's players. Thus, ensuring that the content cannot be copied and illegally distributed.
"Because of the extreme marketability of RDM's technology, this deal is very valuable to DreamStream," said Diebel. "The projected value of this contract is more than $200 million over the next five years."
RDM's format is scheduled to become publically available by the beginning of 2009. Two retailers have already placed orders for the first run of RDM's players. RDM is currently in negotiations to release their technology throughout Europe and Asia.