The first ever Blu-ray discs to feature Managed Copy has arrived, but the underwhelming response to it from major studios has disappointed many.
Managed Copy allows you to make a legal copy of a Blu-ray movie that can be played without the original disc. Managed Copy was one of the major differences between Blu-ray and the failed HD DVD format, with HD DVD backers wanting MC, while the Blu-ray people were less enthusiastic. However, after tough negotiations, Managed Copy was finally adopted as a mandatory feature for Blu-ray.
December 4th was supposed to be the date that all Blu-ray movies released thereafter would support Managed Copy. March 31 2010 is when Managed Copy goes live, and when labeling and promotion of this feature would start. But despite the deadline being less than 4 months away, there is no word of any hardware support or anything official from studios regarding Managed Copy, how it would work, how the payment system would work, and how authentication would work. So far, the only thing concrete has been a demo by Pioneer, and of course, the first ever set of Blu-ray discs that support Managed Copy.
The first publisher to offer Managed Copy is Scenic Labs, who produces screensaver type HD discs for home theater displays. Their enthusiasm for MC is however unmatched by any other studio, and they've had to go it alone with little support in trying to implement MC. Even just trying to find out how to implement it was a tough task for Scenic Labs, and it turned out that at the present moment, MC is nothing more than a serial number and a single XML file.
While it is expected that MC will not come free - consumers will have to pay for the pleasure - studios are still not keen on this new revenue source. MC could prove popular with the home theater crowd, especially those with digital media servers. But most have had to do it the "illegal" way, ripping their own legally purchased DVDs and Blu-rays. And that's what they will have to continue to do until studios provide a legal alternative.
Managed Copy On Blu-ray: All Talk, No Substance
First Managed Copy Blu-ray's Released
Managed Copy Coming To Blu-ray Discs In December, Players To Come Later
Danish DRM Breaker Turns Himself In To Police