DRM Technology for Mobile Multimedia

DRM Technology for Mobile Multimedia

Sai Ho Kwok
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-553-5.ch161
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Mobile multimedia has been promoted as a promising service and application in mobile e-commerce (m-commerce) by many mobile operators and mobile service providers, when high-speed mobile networks are expected to take off in the near future. However, at present, mobile multimedia is still in its infancy, accessed by relatively low-end mobile devices with limited bandwidth and resources. A typical example is Orange in Hong Kong which launched a low-grade multimedia service in 2000 to test the market with current mobile technologies. Due to the physical constraints of a 2.5G mobile network, audio broadcast is the best service that the network can offer up to date. However, in the near future, when advanced mobile networks and technologies become available, higher demands will be placed on the quality of mobile multimedia services. Such services support both audio and video data, for example, video conferencing, music video, video-on-demand and so on. Rights management deserves more serious concern because intellectual property of distributed multimedia content is as valuable as a company’s physical assets (Doherty, 2002). This will become even more important when mobile multimedia services become marketable and an essential part of the business. The purpose of a digital rights management (DRM) system is to allow owners of digital assets (movies, songs) to distribute their products/services/contents electronically in a controlled way (Peinado, 2002). DRM technology makes various online payment schemes possible, such as pay-per-view, pay-per-download, pay-per-game and so on. Hence, mobile service providers are able to control end users’ use of, and accessibility to, their products, and stand to gain huge profits from this capability with the DRM technology (Foroughi, Albin, & Gillard, 2002). A successful DRM system should address both business and technical issues (Grab, 2002), but this chapter only addresses and presents issues in the technical side due to the nature of this book. We present some critical issues of mobile DRM for mobile multimedia. A proposal of mobile DRM framework is presented to meet the urgent DRM needs with the existing 2.5G mobile technology. This chapter is concluded by presenting future directions of mobile DRM for mobile multimedia.

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