Adobe Systems is striving to become the master of digital rights management (DRM) protection for content in the rapidly growing multiscreen video environment.
Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE) announced this week that it has extended the DRM coverage of Adobe Primetime, its multiscreen video delivery and monetization platform for content and service providers, to more connected devices and video screens, including set-top boxes. It has also extended Primetime's DRM coverage to most major web browsers, including Firefox, courtesy of a new HTML5 app. (See Adobe & thePlatform Tie TVE Knot.)
Adobe also claims that it has become the first DRM vendor to work with the three major video device chipmakers -- Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NYSE: AMD), Broadcom Corp. (Nasdaq: BRCM) and Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) -- to enable "hardware-based DRM" for protecting premium HD and 4K video across video devices, including tablets, desktop PCs and smartphones. "We think 4K and ultra-premium content will play a very big role," said Kelash Kumar, group product manager for Adobe Primetime. Unlike 3D TV, he predicted that 4K video will succeed in the pay-TV market because it enables a more immersive experience on large screens, offers a greater color range and doesn't require viewers to adapt their sets or wear special glasses.
In addition, Adobe said its Primetime DRM is now "a core component" of the cable industry's Reference Design Kit (RDK), a pre-integrated software stack for IP video set-tops and other devices. That means that Adobe is now working with Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and other major North American and European MSOs and chipmakers to put the vendor's DRM solution in IP video set-tops, services and apps.
Finally, Adobe announced that it has added Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) as a major content provider customer for its Primetime DRM solution. Netflix thus joins a flock of other major video content providers working with Adobe, including Comcast, Time Warner Inc. (NYSE: TWX), Turner Broadcasting System Inc. , Home Box Office Inc. (HBO) and Rogers Communications Inc. (Toronto: RCI).
Citing a recent study by ABI Research , Adobe said it is now the leader in the highly competitive market for pay-TV DRM. The ABI study ranked Adobe first in the market, slightly ahead of Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT).
— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading