Feeds

Blue-laser alternative to Blu-ray, HD DVD launched

And it's mobile friendly

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Mobile World Congress It's based on blue-laser technology, but that's where the similarity between the V Media disc and both HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc ends. V Media holds just 1GB of data on a disc with a diameter of about an inch and a half and a casing reminiscent of Iomega's ill-fated Clik.

Developed by US company V Media Research, VM discs use the H.264 codec to deliver a claimed better-than-DVD playback quality, with video content encoded at progressive scan 720 x 576 - 576p. The discs are made by Cinram, one of the world's biggest disc replication companies. The drives come from Panasonic.

V Media disc

V Media: 1.5in blue-laser disc

Both have found a home in the plainly styled Movie Phone, a chunky handset announced today by Indian phone company Spice. From photos, you'd think the Movie Phone much like any other media-centric handset, but it's rather bigger, thanks to Panasonic's drive, which opens out of the back of the device much like Sony's UMD drive opens out of the PSP.

V Media disc

Disc and €2 piece

Despite the sub-DVD capacity, VM's 1GB of storage - held on a single layer - can hold a full-length movie. V Media Research reckons it'll have a dual-layer version - recordable discs too - out in 2009, in part, it said, to win over extras-obsessed Hollywood studios.

That's a way off yet - for now we have to question the rigour of disc and drive. But if punting them out into the Indian market doesn't test that, we're not sure what will. Spice's Bollywood content chums reckons VMs will go on sale for the same price as a regular DVD over there, but with the benefit of play-wherever-you-go flexibility. Higher picture quality too, of course, but that's less of an issue when you're watching on a small, 2.8in screen, even one capable of showing 262,144 colours.

Spice Movie Phone and V Media disc

Spice's Movie Phone and VM disc

Spice has thought of that - the Movie Phone will incorporate not only the usual 3.5mm headphone jack, but a TV output port. The unit's battery life is claimed to be 3.5 hours when playing movies off a VM.

Spice Movie Phone and V Media disc

PSP-style rear-mounted disc drive

So while V Media Research readies a more West-friendly version, Spice tests VM technology in a country where computer ownership is small and the number of people able to download movies from a Steve Jobs-style online store even smaller.

Even if VM doesn't find a home over here, it's hard to imagine it not appealing to a population devoted to both mobile communications and the cinema.

Spice hasn't said how much it will charge for the Movie Phone, but the handset is due in a couple of months' time.

Mobile World Congress 2008 Complete Coverage here

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Back to the ... drawing board: 'Hoverboard' will disappoint Marty McFly wannabes
Buzzing board (and some future apps) leave a lot to be desired
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.