Home Technology Blu-Rays less than brilliant idea

Blu-Rays less than brilliant idea

2 min read

After taking a much needed sabbatical from writing about the idiotic Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD war I’m back and as confused as ever thanks to Doobiwan’s tip off.

The Blu-Ray group has come up with an absolutely brilliant idea to stop piracy off there movies, now anyone who knows me knows that I am very vocal about piracy and it really does annoy me intensely. However I wouldn’t blame anyone for hacking the firmware of their Blu-Ray players after this idiotic move from the Blu-Ray group. I don’t quite understand it all (because they cannot be this dumb) but here goes.

BD+ is an extra layer of copy protection. With it, Sony should be able to change the keys used to unlock it. In short, this means that if a BD+ disc is hacked and copied, Sony can change the keys that secure future discs from being copied.

That’s all good and well until you realise that for your Blu-Ray players to now be able to play the movies with this new code they will need a firmware update.  Now I don’t know about you but the vast majority of people I know don’t have a broadband connection in their lounge to update the DVD player, nor are they going to be remotely happy about having to cut a CD from their computer and loading it that way.

But I think once again I must be missing it because how on earth does this help to stop piracy when the people who buy pirated movies can just update their players as well? Or is this only around to protect the discs?

What if you manufacturer doesn’t make a firmware update available for you Blu-Ray player?

The scary thing is that this has already been implemented and as of the time of writing the Samsung players cannot play the latest Fantastic Four movie. It’s not like Samsung are the smallest manufacturers in the world either.

This doesn’t seem to have any effect on the PS3’s Blu-Ray playback ability though, I guess it received a Blu-Ray firmware update in one of the recent patches?

Did Blu-ray score a goal in its own net with BD+? – DVDTOWN.com

Last Updated: October 4, 2007


  1. Milesh Bhana

    October 5, 2007 at 09:59

    Two things

    1) If you can afford a 42″ 1080p screen and a Blu-Ray player, you can afford a broadband connection.
    2) If you can’t afford it, Sony execs recommend getting a second job.

    But seriously, i do think it’s a safe assumption for most, what worries me is that people in remote locations who don’t have access to broadband are going to suffer.

    Imagine getting capped and not being able to watch you brand new BDVD until the 1st of the month. That would suck! Upscaled DVD FTW!


  2. LazySAGamer

    October 5, 2007 at 10:21

    @Milesh, there is a difference between having a broadband connection and having a connection in your lounge…

    Also how keen are you about paying for a 100Mb download to update your Blu-Ray player? Since we have to pay for bandwidth here.


  3. Ruslan

    October 5, 2007 at 10:28

    Until the BR vs HD-DVD war dust settles I wont be buying any more BR movies as many upscaled DVDs offer similar visual qualities anyhow. I will give HD-DVD a try when its officially out in SA in 2008 seeing its movies are cheaper and can also play on a regular DVD player.

    I have seen a few friends buy 300 in ecstacy only to see really grainy footage which is more visible than the DVD version.

    Besides, Transformers is only going to be out in HD-DVD so that alone is a must buy! 🙂


  4. doobiwan

    October 5, 2007 at 15:27

    Well take2 now have HD-DVD’s coming in and they’re about 10% cheaper than BR. but i’m totally with lazy. This fight means nothing to me, I’ll wait till it’s over and I can get a standalone player for


  5. Milesh Bhana ZA

    October 5, 2007 at 17:02

    agreed, this format war has to end.. or multi-format players have to become mainstream (and affordable)

    @Lazy, wrt to your responses. The point i was making is that the creators behind these technologies believe that they are targeting first world countries. So hence their assumptions are indeed correct. So yes, it’s a shlep to move your player to the room where the internet connection is for an update, but that will be what people have to do, and 100MB is nothing for EU/Jap/US people.

    The rest of the world’s people are going to have to visit the store they got their players from and get the update there.


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