Print 49 comment(s) - last by Brockway.. on Jan 10 at 3:56 PM

Blu-ray Disc downgradable for PSP viewing coming later this year

Sony demonstrated at CES 2008 a new feature that would allow a PlayStation 3 to prepare a playable movie for the PSP on Memory Stick Duo using a Blu-ray Disc movie as the source.

"This way, you can have a portable copy you can take with you," said David Bishop, president of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, adding that this was just one of the new features coming to Blu-ray Disc. "There was always the promise of greater interactivity. You'll see that coming in the new year."

The feature will likely be on a disc-by-disc basis, as rather than having the PlayStation 3 re-encode movies for the PSP’s resolution, a PSP-specific version would be stored on the Blu-ray Disc media. This grants the original movie studios’ professional encoding artists to optimize the video for viewing on a handheld system. This also means, however, that current Blu-ray Disc movies may not be able to make the seamless transition to the PSP.

The ability to downgrade a movie to a portable resolution was first seen on Fox’s Live Free, Die Hard and Warner’s Harry Potter: The Order of the Phoenix on standard-definition DVD.

Should this feature truly become commonplace on Blu-ray Disc and DVD movies, then it makes the UMD movie format a rather hard sell. With new UMD movies priced not much cheaper than Blu-ray Disc and DVD, the added utility of having both a home theater and a portable version at one’s disposal could spell the end of the PSP-specific disc format.

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RE: On the other hand
By Alexstarfire on 1/8/2008 6:08:43 PM , Rating: 3
Yea, those are some pretty big flaws, but I don't understand why you couldn't just go convert a regular DVD to this format as well. Why does it HAVE to be Blu-Ray only? It's not like the PSP has better resolution than a DVD anyways. Seems like they are taking something that everyone could do and trying to make profit on people's laziness. Why convert your existing DVD when you can just buy a Blu-Ray and get it transferred automatically?

RE: On the other hand
By aos007 on 1/8/2008 6:31:56 PM , Rating: 2
There is no space on DVD to store the portable version of the movie but there is on BluRay.

RE: On the other hand
By Alexstarfire on 1/8/2008 8:58:05 PM , Rating: 3
For some DVDs maybe, but many of them have 1GB of space or more. Even so, it's not like an extra DVD couldn't be put into a case.

I already know it's just a PR move. Looks great, but is pretty pointless.

RE: On the other hand
By TSS on 1/9/2008 10:48:57 AM , Rating: 2
people who own a PS3 and a PSP might decide to buy more blu-ray movies with this feature, since there would be less hassle involved (although, this is sony) than in downloading and getting them on your PSP. it also might tempt PS3 owners who already buy movies, to buy a PSP for on the road. finally, it might trick PSP owners to purchase a PS3 instead of a XBOX, and get a portable movie player "for free".

atleast those are the arguments i'd think they'd use. not much better then pointless, but still. besides fans who already bought a ps3 and a psp, now get free portable movies with their blu-ray movies. it's nice to see that after you've given 3 (relative) large sums of money to them, they throw in something for free :P

RE: On the other hand
By spluurfg on 1/10/2008 10:32:26 AM , Rating: 2
Actually for many or even most movies, there's plenty of space. Dual layer DVD's can store over 8GB. Often enough the inclusion of a second 'special features' disk is unecessary (as the features could fit on the first disc), but simply a ploy to give the appearance of greater value in the package.

Though of course, there isn't the tremendously ample space provided by high definition formats and for longer movies there may not be space.

RE: On the other hand
By Wagnbat on 1/8/2008 11:08:08 PM , Rating: 2
Yea, those are some pretty big flaws, but I don't understand why you couldn't just go convert a regular DVD to this format as well. Why does it HAVE to be Blu-Ray only?

Because that is the only format Sony is supporting for next gen content. So anything they can do to get you to support it puts money in their pocket. If they made it so that you could do it with your exsisting DVD collection with a simple push of a button it would make them no money. That's business.

And don't get me wrong, you can already do this. It just takes more work and effort with a PC capable of transcoding the DVD MPEG2 into a smaller resolution video mp4.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)

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