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Summary:

According to this AP story, “A film industry group is set to remove some of the procedural hurdles that prevented the legal recording of movies onto blank DVDs in a further sign that Hollywood studios are preparing to expand what consumers can do with downloadable movies.” […]

According to this AP story, “A film industry group is set to remove some of the procedural hurdles that prevented the legal recording of movies onto blank DVDs in a further sign that Hollywood studios are preparing to expand what consumers can do with downloadable movies.”

Apparently that is why Apple’s iTunes Music Store does not allow purchased video files to be burned to set-top-playable DVDs, which originally seemed an odd omission given you could burn purchased music tracks to standard audio CD (the only way to remove the Fairplay DRM).

The author even points out the implications: “Online merchants, like Apple Computer Inc.’s iTunes Music Store, could start to allow video downloads to be transferred onto DVDs.”

I encourage Apple to do so, as the disability to burn to DVD has kept me from having much interest in purchasing video content. Having to schlep the multi-MB file over to a laptop, string the laptop to the TV with multiple cables and so forth is not my idea of ease-of-use. And if they want to start selling (not renting) movies, the ability to burn to DVD is a key issue to me.

  1. There are only 2 issues keeping me from buying video from iTunes right now.

    1) Quality of videos

    I downloaded the 1st season of 24 from iTunes after getting the first few discs from NetFlix. I wanted to watch the rest of the season without waiting on mailing discs back and forth. While it worked – i was able to download and watch the videos – it pointed out a major difference in the quality of the iTunes downloads versus the DVD I had. I compared them side by side (I wish I had taken screenshots now) and the DVD was crystal clear but the download was grainy and fuzzy even sized about 1/2 full screen. The DVD was very clear even at full-screen size on my MacBook Pro.

    2) Burn to DVD

    I will not buy another video from Apple until I can burn them to a DVD and watch them on any computer or TV, unless they are substantially less expensive (which I seriously doubt). It costs just as much to buy a season of a TV show on iTunes as it does to buy the boxed set online, and the quality is better (not to mention those cool booklets that come with the boxed sets :)

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  2. I haven’t bought a video yet, for the same reasons. I would STRONGLY encourage Apple to make the downloadable videos the standard 720×480 DVD resolution if they plan on making them burnable. Anyone playing an upscaled 320×240 video converted from (MPEG4? H.264? What’s iTMS using?) to MPEG2 on a 42″ plasma is going to be sorely disappointed – unless they’ve got the eyesight of Mr. Magoo.

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  3. Apple podría permitir grabar en DVD el vídeo descargado…

    Con las ganas nos quedamos tras la Keynote de Apple en la WWDC 2006 de disponer de una tienda de películas online tal y como se había rumoreado. Sin embargo, mucha gente no lo echó tanto de menos porque hay una opción que todo el mundo espera que …

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  4. i think it will allow burning because it makes good enough sense that it would play it on a screen because why would they just go ahead and do that if regular screens would allow it!!!! that’s just my oppinion!!!

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  5. I am another who thinks that if DVD video is bought it should be able to be watched. We try to do this the legal way and what do they want to do, make it where you have to buy the same product over and over again. I do not purchase the music videos for the same reasons that I don’t purchase a complete CD by one artist. Most of the time there might be two good songs or videos and the rest is junk. If someone else out there makes it legal to purchase and burn the DVD videos online then you can kiss Itunes market share goodbye. Before ITUNES allowed you to purchase video content your only option was to shop eBay and hope you didn’t not get ripped off with some video burned from old VHS tapes. The first vendor to offer a legitimate product at a reasonable price, has me buying all the 80′s videos to burn on DVD that I still love and can only watch on VH1. I already wasted 4.00 on Sexy Back, and another video that I find I can only look at on my laptop. If that was the case with the music, I wonder how many minutes it would take the Sellers to go broke. As soon as the word gets out that you CANNOT BURN PURCHASED ITUNES VIDEOS TO WATCH ON YOUR HOME DVD PLAYER, the market share will collapse.

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  6. I downloaded a number of music videos before realising that they couldn’t be burned – how stupid of me to assume that you would get the same options as audio files – It should be pointed out at the time of the transaction that the video files will not be able to be burned.
    I feel cheated and will not be using i-tunes again.

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  7. Want to watch videos from your iPod? Just spend the $40 for the cables that hook up to your tv or receiver just like you do your dvd and vcr players. Change the video setting on your iPod to OUT – and there you have it! Works great, and I can back up nearly an entire TV show season onto an 8.5GB DVDR for safe keeping.

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  8. The dishonesty on Apple’s part to not inform iTune consumers that you cannot burn movies to dvd is a disgrace. I will no longer purchase from Apple.

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