Remember managed copy? Aw c'mon, it hasn't been that long! Managed copy is / was the answer to people's desire to do totally reasonable things like rip their movies to a portable device, or to a central home server for streaming around the house. Basically the provision in AACS DRM allows users to legally rip however many copies the studio specifies, but those legal rips will still be heavily encased in dark, slippery DRM-goo. You know, just in case you should have friends over with a laptop and sticky fingers. Well, Blu-ray and HD DVD have long since landed, seemingly without any plans for managed copy; shocker, the studios didn't take advantage of the provision. But seeing as how AACS is crackable by a single, simple hex key, the high def DRM obviously wasn't able to cut the mustard in keeping users from doing with their content what they please. The AACS LA's solution? Let them eat cake. The DRM-maker's new plan to distract people from the fact that they can already rip their HD movies to DRM-free formats is simply to pressure and ultimately convince the studios to take advantage of managed copy, and all will be well. (Except for the still-present DRM vestiges.) Will they turn these studios' opinion of managed copy around? Um, what do you think?
Update: Ars apparently got in touch with the AACS LA, who seemed to claim that the provisional AACS license granted in early 2006 is not final, and the feature isn't "ready". That seems to contradict previous reports that have the tech as being done, but just merely unimplemented (the two are like, so totally different, man). Whatever the case, the important part is that maybe, just maybe, it's coming along this year.