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Thomson’s Shows NexGuard WMV

Burbank, Calif. -­ On the heels of its announcement to show its new NexGuard digital watermarking technology for set-top boxes, Thomson said it will also introduce a version of the system for Microsoft Windows Media Video 9 (WMV-9) or VC-1 main profile-formatted files.

The forensic watermarking tool, which will be demonstrated at the upcoming NAB 2007 Show, was said to be the first such utility for WMV-9 files.

NexGuard for WMV-9 will be available this summer for license by technology, networking and hardware manufacturers, or for purchase as a turnkey hardware and software solution by studios, broadcast and network operators, Thomson said.

NexGuard for WMV-9 includes the NexGuard video watermarking technology and the NexGuard Embedder and Investigator tools. NexGuard’s Embedder workstation inserts a unique, transaction-specific NexGuard watermark into the encoded content, which is either sent to business clients or delivered online to consumers via streaming media or Video on Demand.

Pre-processing steps are not required, and preparing requested files for FTP transfer is a rapid and seamless procedure, Thomson said.

Thomson said NexGuard’s forensic mark is invisible, and designed to withstand format changes and extreme reductions in file size. Should the watermarked programming appear in an illegal context, the NexGuard for WMV 9 Investigator tool extracts the identifying information and exposes the source of the leak, the company said.

NexGuard for WMV 9 is the latest addition to Thomson’s suite of forensic marking tools that help secure content distributed in a wide range of standard and high definition formats including MPEG, IMX, DV and DPX.

NexGuard for WMV 9 is said to work “hand-in-hand with digital rights management (DRM) software and operates seamlessly with the Packager and Granter tools, complementary content protection products in the NexGuard suite of content security solutions.”