Blog Post

Delivering Rights Protected Video Content with New Multi-DRM Support

According to Online TV Piracy Forecasts Report Nov. 2017, Revenues lost to online piracy of TV episodes and movies are expected to nearly double from losses in 2016 of $25 billion to nearly $51.6 billion by 2020. OTT and other video distribution services that deliver rights protected video, and especially high quality 4K and HDR content, require protection in order to maintain their distribution licenses granted by content owners. Protection can be provided by Digital Rights Management (DRM), a set of access control technologies for restricting the use of proprietary and copyrighted works that allows setting a license policy for the use of content—such as sharing, recording, or viewing only, and then enforce that policy by encrypting the content to prevent unauthorized use. DRM can be used to protect a broad range of content types, but this blog will restrict the discussion of DRM to video on demand content.


DRM implementations are complex, requiring the integration of third party license server providers and the pre-encryption and storage of content in various formats. At Limelight we took an approach to make DRM implementation as simple as possible. Limelight integrated a solution into the Multi-device Media Delivery on Demand (MMD OD) solution. The new solution is called Multi-DRM On the Fly, and includes all the server-based licensing, software, and implementation services needed for quick deployment. The combination of licensing, authentication, and video player capabilities makes it easy to use digital rights management to protect valuable online streaming media content without complex integrations or management of multiple vendors. Customers get a complete DRM solution integrated with Limelight’s Content Delivery Network along with full implementation support. This integration ensures that every step in the DRM process is seamlessly connected to the next and avoids unnecessary integration costs.




MMD OD Multi-DRM On The Fly (OTF) is designed for customers who want to dynamically set license policies and apply encryption to their content for maximum flexibility and cost savings. For example, an OTT provider with a large library of premium content requires DRM on every full length movie for delivery to all devices used by their subscribers. But they also need the ability to deliver the first 30 seconds of each movie to the public for marketing purposes. Instead of creating separate video assets for the clip and the full length video, MMD OD Multi-DRM OTF will allow a single set of source files be used to display the clip for any end user and require subscriber authentication for the full length video playback.


DRM does not have a universal standard that can be applied everywhere. To ensure the maximum device and browser coverage for protecting your video streaming, Limelight offers all three of the most widely used DRM types: Google Widevine, Microsoft PlayReady and Apple FairPlay. Each of these types support selected devices, operating systems, and browsers. MMD OD can output both HLS and DASH from your source files—and combined with these three DRMs, you have the broadest possible coverage of your end users. Popular devices and browsers natively support just one of the three dominant types of DRM:




Adopting Multi-DRM with MMD OD is straightforward: existing customers can adopt the feature without modifying their existing content, and new customers do not have to pre-encrypt their content before being using DRM OTF.


There are important business benefits derived from deploying Multi-DRM with MMD OD:




More to come

Following this initial support for video on demand content, Multi-DRM capability will be added for live video streams. A follow-up blog post will cover the use cases and implementation for protection of live video. To learn more about Limelight video delivery solutions click here.