What is UltraViolet? And how to use it

You might already own a Blu-ray Disc or DVD with the UltraViolet logo on it. Alternatively, there may be movies on your Christmas list that will come with it.

Designed to bring you even more formats to view your movie purchase on, UltraViolet is an added bonus with most Blu-ray and DVD buys. So how does it work?

Sign up for Flixster

Before you can get started, you will need to set yourself up with a Flixster account. You can opt for the traditional sign up route or connect with Facebook.

Do this and your UltraViolet account will be activated. After that, you will be confronted with the Flixster home page.

The key is the box of links sat on the left of all the movie titles. It is here where you can browse through Flixster and crucially, redeem any UltraViolet copies you might have.

As well as acting as a library for any UltraViolet movies, Flixster also lets you browse movies currently on show, read reviews and watch clips.

Redeem an UltraViolet code

Now to the fun part, redeeming your code. For this we used our copy of The Dark Knight Rises. Inside the box, as is the case with any UltraViolet Blu-ray, is a code.

Hit the "redeem a digital copy" link on the left of the Flixster home page. Here is the irritating part, rather than simply putting in a code, you have to find your movie from a long list of titles, none of which are in alphabetical order.

Click on "get started" after you have found your movie and then you are away. If you haven't already done so, Flixster is going to ask you to create an UltraViolet account and then link it to Flixster.

Flixster wasn't happy linking our account so we needed to head over to the UltraViolet website, set things up there and then login with that account to Flixster. Straightforward or what? Admittedly though this could have just been our browser.

READ: The Dark Knight Rises Xbox companion app hands-on

Once you do eventually get to the code redemption page, input whichever code you have and you should be away. You will need to go back through the same process for each movie code.

Watch a movie on your desktop

The Dark Knight Rises, or whatever movie you have redeemed the code for, should now be sat in the collection tab of your Flixster home page. Hover your mouse over it and you will be given the choice to either watch or download it.

Clicking download will take you to a new page which will then ask for you to download the Flixster desktop app. Another login and finally you should be in a position to download your movie.

The Flixster desktop app should allow you to download your movies to watch offline, whereas the Flixster website is for streaming them. Downloads on our desktop app were in standard definition and were slow even on a 60mbps connection.

So we opted to stream the movie on the Flixster website. The quality is good, but not great. The player supports things like closed captioning and has the ability to let you skip to any part of the movie like most streaming players.

Watch a movie on an iPad or Android device

For UltraViolet content on the iPad, iPhone and Android devices, you will need to download an application called Movies by Flixster with Rotten Tomatoes.

Once you have it downloaded, login using your Flixster details that you setup online and you should see the same movies as listed on your desktop computer. You can then download the movie to your Android or iOS device or stream it straight away.

Movie playback, like the desktop app, is in SD. The player is nice and simple and works, on iOS, like watching movies in the conventional videos app.

Watch a movie on an Xbox or PS3

If you want to use UltraViolet content on the PS3, you will need to do something a touch different. Create a Vudu account here, download the Vudu app onto your PS3 and link Vudu with UltraViolet, then your movies will be available to play.

On the Xbox, the same applies using the Vudu app. Download it from the Xbox app store, link with UltraViolet and you are away. Ultravoilet is also available on the Nook and syncs up directly with the Nook video library.




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