Remember when people used to only watch movies in their family rooms? Those were the days when we could get through 24 hours without the Internet or cell phones. Now we watch movies on our computers, our laptops and, groan, our phones. Blu-ray Bob questions why one would want to watch an epic movie like Gladiator on a 2x3-inch iPhone, but he’ll admit that bleak in-flight entertainment options might call for desperate measures (Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, anyone?).
Some studios are including a digital copy DVD-ROM with the Blu-ray so people can download their movies to other devices. Disney includes both, plus a standard DVD. That’s a lot of discs floating around that cost more to produce, take up space, and will make those landfills that much bigger 10 years from now.
Sony just announced a greener and more efficient—if proprietary—way to get customers the digital copies they crave. Starting with the November 10 BD release of its 1998 Godzilla remake, users can transfer a digital copy to their PlayStation Portable (PSP) directly from the BD itself via the PlayStation 3—no extra discs required. This feature will be included on select future Sony releases, with The Ugly Truth next in line. Great news, sure, but folks without a PS3 or PSP will be left feeling like they have a dial-up modem that is unable to download anything fun. We hope other studios take Sony’s lead in the future but develop a more universal digital copy-delivery method for PS3 virgins.