AfterDawn: Tech news

Philips develops digital watermarking for consumer electronics products

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 14 Apr 2008 18:22

Philips develops digital watermarking for consumer electronics products Philips has developed a watermarking solution in its hospitality television sets and will have it available starting in May in a full range of HDTV sizes. The technology is developed to ease fears of movie studios and other content providers who traditionally provided early-release copies of movies to hotels and other services, where customers can enjoy the content.
Fears about digital piracy has caused many content providers to padlock their HD supply. In an effort to deter the unlawful copying of high definition movies in hotels and enable hoteliers to ensure that they remain available to their guests, Philips is leading the industry with its VTrack digital watermarking solution which will be demonstrated at the 2008 National Association of Broadcasters Show (NAB) in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Philips hospitality products already utilize highly-effective Pro:Idiom encryption technology to secure data from the content source to the television. Philips VTrack extends anti-piracy efforts by making electronic and camcorder copies of video material traceable and thereby decreasing the risk of piracy. Philips VTrack embeds the video with an invisible watermark that identifies the time, date and location.

If a video shows up on the internet or on pirated DVDs, content owners and law enforcement agencies can use the VTrack watermark data to determine where and when it was recorded. "We are excited that Philips has released a forensic watermark system in the hospitality market. Adding this additional layer of content protection enables us to explore new business models," says Richard Berger, Senior Vice President New Media and Technology, at Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Berger added: "We believe it is critically important to seek content protection technologies like VTrack that are designed to be invisible and not to interfere with the consumer's enjoyment of entertainment content." Philips is also working with pay-per-view providers in the hospitality industry to ensure that any watermarking solution will work seamlessly with their infrastructure.

"We are very pleased to see a market leader like Philips propose a new solution for an issue that is of increasing importance to the hospitality industry," said Scott Young, Chief Marketing Officer for LodgeNet Entertainment Corporation. "VTrack represents the first commercially viable watermarking technology that we plan to utilize in our efforts to develop a solution that will meet the needs of the hospitality pay-per-view industry and the studios."

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