Version 1.0, Released: September 20, 2013

The Complete Guide to Widevine

Google’s DRM Platform

With DRM becoming an increasingly important and emerging standard for digital media, Encoding.com decided to cover each of the major players in the space to provide some clarity on their differences and various use cases. One of the major platforms is Widevine which is supported by Google. Widevine’s solution combines DASH, CENC and EME to provide multiplatform content protection.

How Does it Work?

Widevine’s platform offers publishers control over their encryption, key management, distribution and consumption of their assets. How it works is they apply their policies, digital rights and encryption to all inbound assets registered with Widevine and the CMS, which are then uploaded to a destination partner network or CDN. Widevine’s multiplatform DRM then delivers the files to all devices. As bandwidth conditions change, Widevine’s adaptive streaming adjusts the bit rate to the highest quality video.

Widevine Explained

History of Widevine

Google purchased Widevine in 2010 in an attempt to solidify their standing with motion picture corporations, connect Google TV to more devices, speed up the YouTube video streams and to assist with android and adaptive streaming.

Widevine Use Cases

Depending on your requirements, Widevine enables you to:

Device Support

Widevine supports an extensive list of platforms in the living room, on mobile (including iOS and android) and on the desktop.

Android and Widevine

On Android 3.0 and higher platforms, the Widevine DRM plugin is integrated with the Android DRM framework and uses hardware-backed protection to secure movie content and user credentials. Security is never implemented in a single place, but instead relies on the integration of hardware, software, and services. The combination of hardware security functions, a trusted boot mechanism, and an isolated secure OS for handling security functions is critical to provide a secure device.

Widevine developed a DRM plugin which is built on top of the Android DRM framework which offers advanced copy protection features on Android devices. The Widevine DRM plugin provides the capability to license, securely distribute, and protect playback of multimedia content. Protected content is secured using an encryption scheme based on the open AES (Advanced Encryption Standard). An application can decrypt the content only if it obtains a license from the Widevine DRM licensing server for the current user. Widevine DRM functions on Android in the same way as it does on other platforms.

Android and Widevine Interaction

For more information on Android and DRM integration click here.

Google also recently announced that the Chrome browser app for Android will be getting the Widevine DRM. This paves the way for DRM encrypted HTML5 based videos to be playable via the browser, allowing video streaming services like Netflix to operate without the need for a specialized app.To learn more about Google’s plans to build Widevine DRM into Chrome for Android click here.

To learn more about Google’s plans to build Widevine DRM into Chrome for Android click here.

Encoding.com and Widevine Support

Encoding.com is CWIP certified, and we have succesffully worked with and implemented a considerable number of Widevine customer cases. The CWIP extensive certification process enables us to offer a case-by-case analysis and consultation on your DRM needs utilizing Widevine.