New models of Macs include HDCP.
What that means is that media with DRM will not play on a new Mac if it has an "unauthorised" display connected. Unauthorised displays include external monitors, TVs, projectors, and so on that aren't also HDCP-compliant.
This is utterly stupid. Most of the hardware already out there or on the market is not HDCP-compliant. Not only that, nobody knows what is and isn't compliant because manufacturers don't disclose HDCP compliance in their product materials, in order to make it harder for crackers to target the standard.
With Apple rolling out HDCP in their laptops, a lot of people are suddenly discovering that they can no longer use their entertainment setups anymore. We like to hook up our laptops to the TV to watch movies. Apple wants people to buy movies on iTunes... but now they're forced to watch them on their little 13" laptop screen. The problem is that there isn't enough of an installed base of devices that can play this game.
Despite the evident intention of combatting piracy, what this will do is:
1) Encourage people not to buy through iTunes, to avoid DRM-laden media
2) Encourage people to pirate movies they've legitimately bought to get non-broken versions
3) Give crackers a lot of motivation to break HDCP so that people can actually, y'know, use their hardware.
I work in an academic lab. Can you imagine the pain if an instructor wanted to show a DVD on the overhead projector and the Mac wouldn't because the projector wasn't "authorised"? We can't even make sure that doesn't happen, because there's no way to determine what hardware is compliant in order to avoid non-compliant hardware.
Anyone have any bets on how long it will be before HDCP gets cracked?
- New Macs unable to play some movies on connected TVs