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iTunes allows HD film purchases, rentals

updated 05:30 pm EDT, Thu March 19, 2009

iTunes HD movies

Following the release of iTunes 8.1, Apple has announced that it will allow customers to download HD-quality movies. The content will be available to download or rent within 30 days after release. Users can view the movies on Mac or PC systems, televisions, Apple TV and in standard-definition on the iPhone or iPods with video support.

Movies available now include titles such as "Transporter 3" and "Punisher: War Zone," among others. "The Spirit" will be available on April 14th, while "Quantum of Solace" and "Twilight" can now be pre-ordered.

The new HD content requires iTunes 8.1 to download. Purchases are priced between $15 and $20, while rentals cost $4.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. EPad1000

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    HD content and Mac Mini

    Beware new (early 2009) Mac Mini users-

    I have a new Mac Mini and have discovered that you CAN NOT play DRM-protected HD content from the iTunes store. You will get an error message saying that your display is not HDCP-compliant and will not play. From what I understand to be HDCP compliant you must have an HDMI connection - and this is something that Mac Mini (nor any other Mac except AppleTV) supports!!

    It is interesting that they make such a big push for HD content and not be able to play HD content on their newest systems.

    Anyone else have this problem?

  1. G4_Kessel

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    720p

    Why would I pay $15-$20 for a 720p movie? I can buy a blue-ray (1080p) version for that price on eBay. Granted, you need a Blu-Ray player or a PS3... but still, that price seems high.

  1. WiseWeasel

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    DRM

    Avoid video purchases from iTunes like the plague. They are DRM'd, so you can't re-encode them to use on various devices, making them usable only on approved Apple equipment. Buying DRM'd content is the height of short-sightedness. Rentals are one thing, but DRM has no place on purchased content.

  1. ender

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    Which systems?

    Apple needs to clearly state what system restrictions there are. The first poster was allowed to purchase a movie that he can't play. He should have not been allowed to purchase it if his system wasn't capable of playing it. There are going to be a lot of pissed off customers.

  1. ccrider

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +3

    interesting...

    In Apple's "Terms and Conditions":
    (xvi) HDMI. An HDCP connection is required in order to view movies (purchased or rented) and TV shows transmitted over HDMI.

    What is HDCP?

    HDCP stands for High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection, a copy protection scheme to eliminate the possibility of intercepting digital data midstream between the source to the display. The format designed by Intel and licensed by Digital Content Protection, LLC using an authentication and key exchange procedure before video and audio is presented. Products compatible with the HDCP scheme such as DVD players, satellite and cable HDTV set-top-boxes, as well as few entertainment PCs requires a secure connection to a compliant display, the process often described as the handshake. Due to the increase in manufacturers employing HDCP in their equipment, it is highly recommended that any HDTV you purchase is compatible. Although most video devices support high-definition video over component output, analog connections are scheduled to phase out in the future or possibly forced to limited resolutions output.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    Re: interesting

    Although most video devices support high-definition video over component output, analog connections are scheduled to phase out in the future or possibly forced to limited resolutions output.

    Really. I didn't realize the MPAA can now decide what output connections are devices can have.

  1. bjojade

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    Really?

    I saw that HD rentals were available on my computer and I got excited because I have a mini hooked up to my big screen TV and have been suffering through SD rentals. This DRM c*** is getting out of hand. I am all for preventing piracy, but when you prevent legitimate honest use, it's just crazy.

    If they are going to have DRM like that in place, there certainly better be decent hardware that can actually USE the connection. This blows. My day is now ruined.

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