UltraViolet is new initiative in digital media distribution. With its buy-once-play-anywhere ideology as well as several other features, the service seems to be avoiding a lot of the pitfalls that other online services have endured.
The service was discussed in an article by Home Media Magazine. In that article, Adam Powers, VP of technology at Rovi Corp., said that UltraViolet had a one in four chance of succeeding. However, that may have changed, given the execution and support of the service from the movie studios.
Two Blu-ray releases have already come packed with an exclusive UltraViolet copy: Horrible Bosses and Green Lantern, and more are on the way. Not only that, but there has been a strong push in the advertising of these releases to mention the UltraViolet service. Okay, but what exactly is UltraViolet?
Essentially, UltraViolet is a digital store. But one that features endless options. For instance, the Horrible Bosses and Green Lantern releases are store bought discs that feature essentially a digital copy of the movie. However, you can also buy movies off of UltraViolet's website. Now this is where things get interesting. You have control over how you want to watch the movie. You can watch it on your computer or mobile device. You can stream it. You can download it. You can even request a disc copy when you purchase it online. To put it simply, there is a lot of flexibility to watch the movie how you want to. Also, it is possible to have multiple users on the same account, which is a huge benefit.
Ultimately the success will come down to how well the company can educate consumers. As Powers put it in the article, "When the studios did DVD, it was CD with video. With Blu-ray it was DVD in high-def. With UltraViolet [there's no comparison]. At the end of the day, consumers are going to decide if it's valuable to them or not. There is that risk of putting it out there and consumers saying they're not interested in the value proposition."
It's time to wait and see how UltraViolet handles this obstacle.