With Blu-ray and HD-DVD being relatively new on the video scene, it’s not surprising that each has a logo to let consumers know that a disc is compatible with its respective formats. The HD-DVD one is an extension of the DVD logo (pictured), which informed consumers that the shiny disc they were considering contained more than just music. Each of the major video game console vendors also brands compatible software with the appropriate logo as well.
Thinking about my Vudu column posted today on Engadget and the news that the company is offering The Bourne Ultimatum in high-definition, I’m wondering how consumers other than Vudu owners might know that the movie is available on the service. Awareness of broadband video services is very low. It would benefit several companies at this early stage to develop some kind of logo signifying that a movie was available for legal digital rental or purchase. There have been a few on-air promotions showing that certain video content is available via iTunes, but I’ve mostly seen these for television shows.
It may be hopeless as, unlike with physical media, many of the video download services (iTunes, Xbox Live Marketplace, Vudu, Fanfare) are vertically integrated. However, a broadband video alliance might also have more leeway in negotiating with studios for better terms, such as the ludicrous 24-hour limit to finish watching a movie once it’s started (not that I’ve been burned by that… twice). None of the services (except maybe Vongo) seem to be competing on usage terms.