UltraViolet is letting the public peek through its curtains. With the first movie titles going on sale this month, the cloud-based movie service is now accepting registrations for users to create their account, even though it will be several days before it can be used for anything.
Creating an account is simple, at least, and at this early stage doesn’t require an annoying or intrusive amount of information. Each account name can have six users. Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, UltraViolet’s controlling consortium, said this was a family could share an account, but there doesn’t seem any reason why accounts couldn’t be shared among unrelated friends.
Warner Home Entertainment Group is releasing the first two UltraViolet movies on Oct. 14: Blu-ray versions of Green Lantern and Horrible Bosses will have the capability for consumers to store them in their UltraViolet locker. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment will add The Smurfs and Friends with Benefits to the UltraViolet catalog on Dec. 2. In addition, Time Warner’s Flixter will be UltraViolet compatible, meaning Flixster users can create UltraViolet accounts and manage their movie collections without leaving Flixster.
“Remember, with UltraViolet, what will happen is, if you go and buy a physical DVD, you will have it in the cloud as you walk out of the store,” was how Jeffrey Bewkes, chairman and chief executive of Time Warner, described UltraViolet during a conference call with analysts. “If you buy an electronic copy of a movie from either a cable operator or any electronic retailer, you’ll also own a copy that’s up in the cloud that you can move from device to device. If you want to take your old DVDs into retailers and have them put them into the cloud and therefore be available for you to move from device to device, you’d be able to do that also.”
Movies in an UltraViolet library can be streamed to most Internet-connected devices and downloaded to UltraViolet certified devices for viewing without a connection. Although there many consumer electronic device manufacturers are members of DECE, none of them have put anything on sale yet, even though there is a section of each UltraViolet account for registering them.