New Navy DVD Player Keeps Early Access to Movies

Story Number: NNS111025-06Release Date: 10/25/2011 2:57:00 PM
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From Commander, Navy Installations Command Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- In keeping with the latest technology, the Navy developed an encrypted DVD player for use by ships at sea and at Navy installation movie theaters, to show movies to the crew and to Sailors and family members assigned ashore.

This will allow the Navy to continue to be able to show the digital version of the movies earlier than they are released to the public.

"The film industry has always been supportive of our program and the military in general," said Ron Rossman, NMPS head. "It was clear that both the industry as well as Enseo wanted the NDVD player to be a success, and worked cooperatively to ensure that the proper specifications were met."

The Navy Motion Picture Service (NMPS) selected Enseo, a provider of digital media solutions, to design a custom product that met the specific objectives of this initiative. The result is the innovative new Navy DVD (NDVD) player.

NMPS is a Morale, Welfare and Recreation program under the Fleet and Family Readiness branch of Commander, Navy Installations Command. It provides movies licensed for public showings to afloat and shore commands of the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard worldwide.

"Navy licensing agreements include an "early window availability" for the movies acquired from the film distributors, and this allows Sailors to watch these movies before they are available on DVD or via electronic delivery viewing by the general public," added Rossman.

The early access to this copyrighted material requires a high degree of content security against illegal duplication and that led to the development of the encrypted NDVD player. "Movies are usually available to the Navy 30-60 days prior to access by the general public," said Rossman.

The player marks a significant improvement in the quality of film viewing for Sailors and their families, while maintaining strict protection measures for digital video content.

Security of the movie licensing was a major priority in the discussions.

"Each NDVD is encrypted and embedded with an expiration date. Because of this the DVDs can only be played on an NDVD player. All NDVDs are also programmed with a digital watermark that can be linked back to the specific NDVD unit, as well as the time and date it was last played," said Rossman.

Maintaining troop morale and improving program service quality were crucial factors in the decision to implement this new system.

"When our servicemen and women are deployed, they typically want three things: Internet access, fitness equipment, and movies," said Rossman. "Our goal is to meet their needs, and provide them with the best amenities possible while they are serving our country."

NMPS has distributed NDVD players to all shore locations. Shipboard installation has started and is being handled by the Defense Media Activity (DMA) as a cooperative initiative to upgrade Shipboard Information Training and Entertainment (SITE-TV) systems. NMPS estimates that the fleet installation process will be completed by December 2012.

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