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HD DVD titles showcase web-connected interactivity

The much-touted web-connected interactivity of high-definition discs is becoming a reality. Transformers from Paramount Home Entertainment and Heroes: Season One from Universal Home Entertainment are among the HD DVD titles that saw significant online usage of their web-connected features.

Transformers, which continues to be one of the top selling titles in any high definition format, had more than 80,000 unique online users, with 31% returning to download additional content as it became available. Universal's current web-enabled titles, which include Heroes: Season One, Knocked Up, and Evan Almighty, saw an average of 30% of HD DVD purchasers going online to download content and connect with other fans.

The movie’s web-enabled features include downloadable 'Sector 7 Transmission' videos, Transformers Profiler with still photography and bios, and 'Intelligence Mode,' a special data dashboard providing statisics on the various 'Autobots' and 'Decepticons,' a GPS locator and factoids. The Transformers HD DVD also includes 'Menubots,' which allow fans to customize their menus to a variety of themes, from Bumblebee to Megatron.

Made possible through Microsoft's HDi technology, web-connected features are supported in every HD DVD player due to the mandatory hardware requirements inherent in the HD DVD specifications. The specifications include a network connection, picture-in-picture capability, and persistent storage on the player itself.

"We've only scratched the surface in offering web-connected experiences to fans of hit movies and TV shows, so it was great to see so many connecting online for these titles," said Ken Graffeo, executive vice president of HD strategic marketing for Universal Studios Home Entertainment, and co-president of the HD DVD Promotional Group. "As more titles from the HD DVD studios include access to downloads, trailers and community pages, the owner of any HD DVD player can take advantage of these web-connected experiences."

Story filed 10.12.07

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