Blu-ray's Digital Bridge can transfer movies to USB hard drives

10 Aug 2015 | Rasmus Larsen |

The next-generation Blu-ray standard and players, expected for release later this year, will support a “Digital Bridge” function, making it possible to transfer a copy-protected version of the movie onto a USB hard drive or mobile device.

A "Digital Bridge"

The "Digital Bridge" was first mentioned when the Ultra HD Blu-ray standard was officially announced. The BDA group has now shared more details on the initiative - and it sounds promising.

With Digital Bridge you can register your movie through a cloud service. Once registered, you will be able to transfer a copy of the movie to other devices such as media players, tablets and phones. It is currently unknown how this is done but more details will be shared soon, BDA promises. It is also unclear if the Digital Bridge has ties to Vidity. You do not need to register the disc if you just want to watch it on your new Ultra HD Blu-ray player.

Blu-ray Digital Bridge

Another element of the Digital Bridge is the option to copy the movie to an "authorized" USB hard drive as a “bit-for-bit” copy. It will be encrypted so it will require a hard drive with content protection, making it impossible to transfer it to a PC. New Ultra HD Blu-ray movies can take up to 100GB of storage space, so you will need a large-capacity hard drive. More technical details are available here.

It is optional for Blu-ray player manufacturers to implement the Digital Bridge but if they choose to do so certain elements are mandatory and dictated by BDA to ensure compatibility. The manufacturer is allowed to expand upon these mandatory requirements with added functionality.

The first Ultra HD Blu-ray players are expected to hit the market before the end of 2015, and we expect to see them in action for the first time during IFA 2015 in Berlin this September.

Besides the Digital Bridge, the new Blu-ray standard will offer Ultra HD, HDR, wide color gamut, and object-based audio.

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