UltraViolet movie format to use Dolby Digital Plus encoding, keep sound thumping across platforms

Movies encoded in UltraViolet's Common File Format represent just one of multiple takes on paid internet video -- what's to make them stand out? The answer might just be Dolby Digital Plus audio encoding, which should be a staple feature of CFF from now on. A newly ready development kit lets producers feed the multichannel sound to hardware and apps that can recognize it, including web-based avenues like Apple's HTTP Live Streaming, Microsoft's Smooth Streaming and MPEG's DASH. Just in case a few devices fall through the cracks, Dolby is talking directly with digital production firms like castLabs, Digital Rapids and Elemental Technologies to make sure the audio codec's implementation truly spans platforms. We don't know how soon movies will take advantage of the upgrade, but the Dolby addition lends weight to a fledgling format that might have as fierce a battle in home theaters as it does on PCs and tablets.

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Great Sound Radiates Across UltraViolet with Dolby

Encoding Companies Choose Dolby Digital Plus to Deliver High-Quality Sound for UltraViolet

AMSTERDAM--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Dolby Laboratories, Inc. (NYSE: DLB) today announced that leading content-encoding solution providers will use Dolby® Digital Plus technology to enable high-quality multichannel audio for the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE) UltraViolet™ platform through the UltraViolet Common File Format (CFF).

"A new era in entertainment has begun with UltraViolet, and Dolby is working closely with the content community to ensure that consumers of UltraViolet content can enjoy optimized sound no matter what content, service, or device they choose," said Ron Geller, Vice President, Worldwide Content Relations, Dolby.

UltraViolet enables consumers to create personal digital entertainment collections, with the freedom to access their content both at home and on the go across multiple devices. The UltraViolet CFF makes download functionality consistent across all UltraViolet retailers, which makes it easy for consumers to move or copy downloaded files directly across UltraViolet-compliant devices or applications, without the need for additional downloads or bandwidth.

"DECE is built on the efforts of the most innovative and forward-thinking companies in digital entertainment. Dolby has worked on the early verification and refinement of the Ultraviolet Common File Format technical design as well as investing to help establish and complete the testing and verification process for Dolby Digital Plus encoded CFF files," said Mark Teitell, General Manager and Executive Director, DECE. "We welcome and appreciate Dolby's contributions to the process and are excited to be working together on UltraViolet."

Working with Encoding Companies to Deliver Unparalleled Sound

The number of devices and services that support high-definition entertainment is growing rapidly, and Dolby Digital Plus is a powerful and efficient way to bring high-quality audio to UltraViolet, which combines the benefits of cloud access with the power of an industry standard. Dolby Digital Plus enables the delivery of high-quality audio to any compatible device and distribution workflow, and it helps connect UltraViolet with more than 900 million products, including connected TVs, smartphones, tablets, PCs, game consoles, and Blu-ray™ players using the technology to deliver high-quality sound.

When used on Ultraviolet, Dolby Digital Plus offers content-encoding providers a powerful means to ensure consumers get the experience envisioned by the music artist, film director, or sound designer.

"For UltraViolet's continued success, the content creation and delivery ecosystems need to be ready to deliver the same great experience consumers can enjoy from packaged media today, including Dolby surround sound," said J.C. Morizur, Senior Director, Broadcast Professional Solutions, Dolby. "Dolby Digital Plus is a powerful and efficient way to bring high-quality audio to multiple platforms and addresses some fundamental challenges our partners face when content needs to be delivered to an ever-growing, rapidly evolving world of IP-connected devices."

Offering a superior audio and video experience to customers takes cloud-encoding solutions to a higher level. It also offers more choices to premium content owners for their professional content production encoding and transcoding needs. Dolby is working with companies such as castLabs, Digital Rapids®, and Elemental Technologies to ensure that UltraViolet content plays well on many services and devices that matter to consumers.

"Support for Dolby Digital Plus audio within UltraViolet CFF media assets is an important facet of the efficient, automated UltraViolet production workflows enabled by our latest media transformation and workflow solutions," said Mike Nann, Director, Marketing and Communications, Digital Rapids. "We're pleased to be working with Dolby to enable rich content experiences that combine high-quality audio with our superior video-encoding quality and the consumer ease and flexibility afforded by the UltraViolet initiative."

"Elemental® Server is now certified for Dolby Digital Plus Pro encoding, making it one of the first encoding platforms to support Dolby Digital Plus multiplexing in the UltraViolet CFF format. As a member of the UltraViolet consortium, Elemental supports the DECE asset-creation ecosystem for secure content distribution and is pleased to provide Dolby Digital Plus encoding for the delivery of high-quality audio for the UltraViolet initiative," said Keith Wymbs, Vice President, Marketing, Elemental Technologies.

Working with the Content Community to Ensure Great Experiences

Dolby also announced the availability of a development kit to support the use of Dolby Digital Plus in the UltraViolet CFF specification. The latest development kit includes test vectors to support companies developing products and services based on the UV CFF specification. Today's update complements previous development kits to support the use of Dolby Digital Plus in the MPEG Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (MPEG-DASH), Apple® HTTP Live Streaming (HLS), and Microsoft® Smooth Streaming online delivery systems. Current Dolby partners and licensees will have access to the new development kit immediately.