MOD Systems, an industry-leading provider of digital media delivery systems for retailers, announced that Toshiba Corporation, NCR Corporation, and others, have agreed to invest $35 million, giving the companies minority stakes in MOD Systems.
The investment is part of an ambitious initiative to leverage breakthrough portable digital storage technology that offers the potential to revolutionize how consumers download movies, TV shows, music and other digital content at a wide variety of locations, and then replay it on multiple devices. The initiative will combine technologies developed by the companies, and is aimed at meeting the explosive demand for easier access to high-quality digital entertainment and other content.
Under the initiative, consumers will download digital content to Secure Digital (SD) cards and portable devices such as mobile phones through kiosks and other self-service devices deployed, integrated and maintained by NCR at retail stores, airports, quick-service restaurants and other outlets. Toshiba will develop dedicated set-top boxes for the service, and develop and market high capacity SD cards for the system, improving the speed of downloads in the future.
The kiosks and other self-service devices will use the MOD Retail Enterprise System for “multichannel” digital media delivery, which enables digital content to be managed and distributed securely using portable devices and portable storage media, including SD memory cards.
“Digital distribution of content to SD cards offers consumers a convenient, faster, more portable way to buy content and access and use their growing entertainment libraries,” said Yoshihide Fujii, Corporate Senior Vice President and President and CEO of Digital Media Network Company, Toshiba Corporation. “We’re very pleased to join with MOD Systems, an innovative company with unmatched expertise in digital content distribution systems. This investment is key to our strategy for migrating consumers to digital.”
“This technology and initiative have tremendous potential,” said Bill Nuti, Chairman and CEO of NCR. “We continue to see opportunities to extend our experience in self-service to promising new industries like entertainment. Our initiative with MOD Systems is designed to offer consumers one of the fastest, most convenient ways to access high-quality digital entertainment.”
MOD Systems provides retailers with a complete digital media system for consumers to load entertainment to portable devices and storage media, or burn content to an optical format (CD/DVD). The MOD Retail Enterprise System, deployed with leading global retailers, supports all content types and distribution scenarios including manufacturing-on-demand, delivery in optical or digital format, and hybrid online and in-store systems. Video entertainment content will be provided by major and independent studios, which will provide approximately 4,000 titles at the launch of the service. Initial content downloads will be in standard definition, and the service may also be applied to downloads of high definition content in the future.
“Digital media has not been able to truly impact sales at retail and therefore has not become truly pervasive and accessible to all consumers,” said Mark E. Phillips, CEO of MOD Systems. “Our goal of creating richer retail destinations for digital entertainment will be furthered with Toshiba and NCR as strategic partners. We are humbled and excited to have leaders in consumer electronics and self-service accelerate our vision for entertainment in retail.”