DRM Strikes Again: Samsung Blu-ray Firmware Update Means No Warner Or Universal Movies

from the who-needs-'em? dept

AdamR writes in to let us know that owners of Samsung Blu-ray players have been discovering that the latest firmware update means that movies from Warner Bros. and Universal don't play. Instead, they just lock up thanks to the DRM built into Blu-ray. Isn't that great? Pissing off legitimate customers is always a way to win people over. Of course, you have to wonder if Warner Bros. and Universal are upset with Samsung, but really they should only be upset with themselves for supporting a DRM technique that could block legitimate customers from watching their movies.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  •  
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    Brendan (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 1:02pm

    And again DRM just hurts legitimate consumers

    No surprise there, since that's all it ever did.

    I've always thought this expressed the point best:
    http://i.imgur.com/GxzeV.jpg

    The bottom flowchart needs to start looking more like the top flowchart.

     

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    jusreadin, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 1:59pm

    It's Normal Operation...

    Someone owes somebody a nickel somewhere. That's what DRM is all about. The cure ? Simple disclosure, like any harmful effect - each product must have a warning label with it's DRM type or compatibility and supported variants and versions. It'd make everyone think twice, maybe.

     

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      Blatant Coward (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 3:14pm

      Re: It's Normal Operation...

      We need to take back the nickel given to the guy who did the programming for the DRM authentication.

      How can you have a warning label for DRM? It's for teh chillun and makes sure my copy of Twister isn't kiddie porn! If you don't use DRM your copy may be kiddie porn! Helen Hunt is now very disappointed in you. Not angry, but very very disappointed.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 2:09pm

    Well, if you bought one of those, and it doesn't play, you know where to get one that does, don't you?

    No, it isn't at the store... think a bit, you'll get there.

     

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    Thomas (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 2:17pm

    Maybe it's a new form of windowing - push back your ability to watch your legally acquired copy of the movie by whatever time it takes for the latest firmware update to be "released."

     

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    TPBer, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 2:32pm

    Why..

    are ppl still using plastic. HD is the only way to go. Plastic is trash that can break easily.

    BD are such a waste of time, wake up and just use HD. If you buy this crap you asked for it.

     

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      Cynyr (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 5:26pm

      Re: Why..

      HD as in hard drive? or HD as in qwest's new Heavy Duty internet, or high def? or ??

      As for that, while my ps3 will play a video from a harddrive, it doesn't have a bittorrent client built in, and i find it annoying to walk all over the house, so i ripped all my dvds to my desktop and use mediatomb.

       

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    ChronoFish (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 2:42pm

    Here is me

    laughing at you for buying blue-ray and supporting DRM. That will never happen in my house - because I will never own a blue-ray device.

    -CF

     

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      Nastybutler77 (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 3:49pm

      Re: Here is me

      laughing at you for buying blue-ray and supporting DRM. That will never happen in my house - because I will never own a blue-ray device.

      Laughing at who exactly? The Samsung BD owners? I own a BluRay player (a PS3) and I've never had any problems, other than the mild inconvienience of having to occasionally wait while new firmware downloads. A hassle I'm willing to put up with because the quality of the video and audio is so far superior to anything that I've downloaded via BitTorrent.

      I do use BitTorrent for comedies and other movies that don't really "need" to be seen in 1080p with lossless audio, or to preview movies that I may be interested in buying on BluRay but didn't want to spend $12 to see in the theater.

      So because someone chooses to use BluRays you feel the need to scoff? Why is it you think your poo doesn't stink? Your comment makes you sound like a condescending prick. Do you drive a Prius as well? Are you Vegan and want to scoff at those of us who choose to eat meat? How about all of you makeing these type of comments get over yourself and quit acting so high and mighty. Sheesh.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 4:58pm

        Re: Re: Here is me

        While I can't be sure if its actually the case, your post seems to insinuate that 1080p content isn't available via Bittorrent. You can actually get content that is audibly and visually identical to their plastic BD counterparts. In fact, I've noticed a sharp trending away from 480p content towards HD content in terms of popularity.

         

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          X, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 5:28pm

          Re: Re: Re: Here is me

          1080 content that is compressed (lossy!!) doesn't have the same quality as what you get on high definition disks (HDD or BRD).

          Same comparison between 480 avi's and DVD.

          Assuming you're looking at compressed video. I somehow doubt anyone's sharing raw avi's at 1080 quality (terabytes per hour?)

           

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            PaulT (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 11:43pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Here is me

            Yes, but that's pretty irrelevant. There comes a point where most people simply can't tell the difference. This is true of 320kbps MP3s vs. FLAC (audiophiles hate the former, but most can't tell the difference), just as it's true of compressed 1080p vs. uncompressed.

             

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            Eldakka (profile), Aug 24th, 2010 @ 12:39am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Here is me

            err, isn't 1080 content on BD disks compressed in h.264/MPEG 4 AVC or VC-1, i.e. lossy compressed?

             

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            techflaws.org (profile), Aug 24th, 2010 @ 3:28am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Here is me

            somehow doubt anyone's sharing raw avi's at 1080 quality (terabytes per hour?)

            Apparently you don't know where to look. Just as with "untouched" DVDs there are "untouched" Blurays out there as uncompressed MKV (who uses AVI anymore) or m2ts with all audio/subtitle streams in one file.

             

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          Cynyr (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 5:29pm

          Re: Re: Re: Here is me

          1080P is sure, but are 20-30GB rips with lossless sound in a container/codec that ps3 playes(not mkv, and a very limited upper subset of h264)? Are those seeded well? most 1080P i see online is not 35Mbps video with 1Mbps 7.1 audio...

          I'm sure movies are trending that way, but lots of the tv shows i get from the UK are not in HD yet, simply 480P.

           

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        Eugene (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 5:15pm

        Re: Re: Here is me

        So, PS3 owner to PS3 owner, I have a question. When you bring up the menu during a movie, what the HELL do all those buttons do?? There are, like, seven differently shaped forward and back arrows! I didn't even know you could represent arrows that many different ways! And there are 3 buttons that are just red green and blue squares, *labeled* "red" "green" and "blue" as their description! What the hell does that mean! And everything's just scattered randomly on that button grid, I'm always hunting for the basic controls it's ridiculous! I'm never sure whether hitting stop will "stop" the movie or activate the "black" feature! That menu was created by insane people! I'm sure of it!

        Okay that stopped being a question pretty soon after the beginning, but I'm sure you understand..

         

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        JEDIDIAH, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 6:58am

        Yes. Laughing at YOU.

        > Laughing at who exactly? The Samsung BD owners? I own a
        > BluRay player (a PS3) and I've never had any problems,
        > other than the mild inconvienience of having to
        > occasionally wait while new firmware downloads.

        Laughing at YOU trying to spin this.

        "I've never had any problems except for when movies won't play."

        Consumers should never be aware of firmware.

         

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          Nastybutler77 (profile), Aug 24th, 2010 @ 11:05am

          Re: Yes. Laughing at YOU.

          Laughing at YOU trying to spin this.

          I'm not trying to spin anything. As I said, having to wait for the firmware to update is a hassle, but one I'm willing to deal with for the quality. I agree that consumers shouldn't have to be aware of firmware.

          While you're laughing at me, I'm pitying you for your schadenfreude. What a sad way to go through life. Meanwhile I'll be enjoying an amazing home theater experience... As soon as my firmware is done downloading.

           

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        bob, Aug 25th, 2010 @ 5:34pm

        Re: Re: Here is me

        Ahhh a blathering ad-hominem attack, good for you, you da man, yes you are, yes you are!

        Some consumer protection action should come into play here. For a firmware update "bricking" a video device, I would not be happy if that were to happen to me. So until this DRM crap works it's way out, I won't be a buyer of Blue-ray.

        If I really really need life like I'll drive on over to the Falls now thats life like.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 3:08pm

    Wow, I'm amazed at how poorly this blue-ray DRM thing has been handled over the last couple years. I mean, updates are coming out left and right that are just stopping legit users from watching legally purchased movies. There's really no better argument for piracy.

    See, if you spend money to watch a movie, then they're going to illegally take away your ability to watch the movie. (you paid for it and you didn't get it.) But pirate it and you can watch it without any restrictions.

     

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      crade (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 3:32pm

      Re:

      Seriously? You're amazed? It's not like it's the first time. The only thing that amazes me is that the record and movie companies suicide and blame pirates isn't done yet.

       

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    Rekrul, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 4:08pm

    Whatever comes next will probably need a unique code obtained from a central server to play each new title.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 4:59pm

      Re:

      and pay a fee every time you play too

       

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      Oh That Brian!, Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 6:11pm

      Re: You're too late ...

      Too late - that's been thought of, marketed and failed miserably. Remember Digital Video Express? Check it out here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIVX_(Digital_Video_Express)

       

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        Rekrul, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 6:20pm

        Re: Re: You're too late ...

        Too late - that's been thought of, marketed and failed miserably. Remember Digital Video Express? Check it out here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIVX_(Digital_Video_Express)

        Yes, but that used the phone line at a time when most people weren't connected to the net. Now that people have brainwashed into accepting that some devices (PS3, XBox360, Windows XP/Vista/7) need to be connected all the time to receive updates, the idea that your disc player needs to be connected to the net 24/7 will be much easy for them to force on people.

         

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    Hugh Mann (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 5:13pm

    Where is the DRM issue?

    Well, the links go to articles that only mention firmware updates gone bad. None of them mentioned DRM at all. Has someone actually gone back to the original forum discussions to confirm that this is DRM-related?

    HM

     

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      Cynyr (profile), Aug 23rd, 2010 @ 5:33pm

      Re: Where is the DRM issue?

      the bluray spec has things in it to quarry the player to find out if it is running the newest firmware, or DRM spec X.Y or something to that effect. If it finds it less that satisfactory, it refuses to play.

       

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        Richard (profile), Aug 24th, 2010 @ 1:39am

        Re: Re: Where is the DRM issue?

        All blu-ray players conatain "hidden" keys that are used to decrypt the movies. If someone cracks the player and extracts the keys then they can break the DRM on all existing blu-ray discs. When that happens the central licensing authority will revoke those keys - meaning that new discs won't play on that player until it has a firmware update and receives some new keys.

        Presumably someone has messed up the process of issuing new keys for the Samsung device.

        The blu-ray DRM is thus a losing battle - but every time they take a loss they force all the consumers to get an upgrade before they can play new discs.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 2:37am

    Fast and slow

    On the faster part of the world, BDRips could be downloaded within a few hours. (Fiber internet straight into your house is not uncommon here)

    On the slower part of the world, downloading firmware updates can take hours, that when your update completes, you're not sure if you want to see it anymore...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 6:42am

    No oversight, no control and the corporations run rampant.
    Sounds like a horror movie. Hope I can watch it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 7:26am

    alt.binaries.x264.htdv

     

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    darryl, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 7:26am

    Its not DRM its the firmware, but you know that right !!!..

    Nice, classic slight of hand, as you know as well as I do that its not the DRM that is the problem, its the new firmware, If you were tasked to fix this problem you would be a rank amateur if you went to the DRM code to fix the problem.

    You would see that the DRM has works and does work with correct firmware. And you would make the correct assumption that the fault lies in the new firmware upgrade.

    But that does not sound as nearly as good as making the usual fasle statements and misdirection. That is so common here.

    But its interesting what some people will 'buy' off Mike and Co.

    Just saying things like this does not make them true, and does not indicate in any way that you really know much about the subject matter.

     

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      BigKeithO (profile), Aug 24th, 2010 @ 8:39am

      Re: Its not DRM its the firmware, but you know that right !!!..

      Where exactly do you go "to the DRM code" on your BD player? Oh that's right! The firmware! Thanks for dropping in.

      The only reason you need to update your "firmware" on BD players so often is to get the latest and greatest encryption keys (aka DRM) for the new discs. Do you even know anything about the BD spec or do you just come here to spout off about things you don't like?

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 8:56am

      Re: Its not DRM its the firmware, but you know that right !!!..

      you mean the upgrade to the firmware that contains the DRM used to decrypt the disks? The firmware required to decrypt the disk to view it? The firmware that WOULD NOT REQUIRE UPDATING IF IT WASN"T FOR THE DRM? That firmware?

       

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    darryl, Aug 24th, 2010 @ 5:38pm

    Its so much safer to talk and no to do.. and there is alot of talk, "talk is cheap"


    The only reason you need to update your "firmware" on BD players so often is to get the latest and greatest encryption keys (aka DRM) for the new discs. Do you even know anything about the BD spec or do you just come here to spout off about things you don't like?


    That might be true, but this article is about OLD DRM not working after NEW firmware was added

    So what has 'getting the latest and greatest encryption keys' have anything to do with

    "firmware update means that movies from Warner Bros. and Universal don't play. "

    Its not Warner or Universal that provided new keys, its the firmware that was WRONG..

    But thats ok, being wrong is a way of life on this web site...

    schadenfreude

    The only person on this ste that I see that is full of it, "schedenfreude" is Mike. Who seem to revel in the misfortune of others, other business, and people who are successful in fields he thinks he knows about.

    I dont have schedenfreude, at all, if you were refering to me, I do not relish or enjoy others failing, and I do no write articles about groups that fail, just because they tried and failed.

    At least they tried,, right.... Mike what have you done.. ???

    You dont fail, sure, you dont do anything, so failure is impossible. Its nice and safe isnt it :)..

    But ofcourse if you really believed in your own claims you would pull your finger out and do something about it, and not just "TALK and TALK and TALK".

    Why dont you show us all by example how your system is going to change the world ?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2010 @ 11:23pm

    DRM = Digital RENTAL Media

    Your rental has expired

     

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    Joe M, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:30pm

    This really pisses me off. I am not planning on buying any more Samsung products

     

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    Not Buying, Feb 17th, 2012 @ 11:08am

    More DRM on the way

    There is even more DRM on the way. The audio watermarking has begun for some blu-rays, stopping playback if it is not a pressed store bought disc. It is called Cinavia. The watermark detectors are now mandatory and all blu-ray players are required to have it now. After 20 minutes due to the hash table not matching(no AACS) the audio will mute after 20 minutes on the burned copy. Also, blu-ray players are mandated to have all HDMI only very soon, securing an encrypted digital connection.

     

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