Fill your SD cards with movies at in-store kiosks

Home media services may have real competition from kiosks in department stores

Over the years, there have been so many failed attempts to deliver downloaded media through kiosks in shops we've lost track already. Nevertheless, a new plan backed by Toshiba at least sounds somewhat joined up.

The Japanese firm is investing a total of $24 million (£13 million) in US digital content supplier MOD Systems and with it comes a grand scheme to make in-store downloads really work.

SD cards, SD movies

From next spring, shoppers in the US will be able to take their SD cards to terminals in participating stores and fill them with (DRM-ed) TVs and movies from a range of mainstream sources.

The group hasn't said what those source are, but has indicated around 4,000 standard-definition titles will be available at launch – high definition will come later.

More important, however, is Toshiba's plan to feed the hardware side of the equation.

STBs promised

The Tokyo company says it will be producing dedicated set-top boxes for viewing the content of the SD cards without recourse to a computer, as well as portable iPod-like devices with screens.

Throw in a promise to pump out lots of high-capacity SD cards, and Toshiba probably thinks it has a neat end-to-end solution, but what's the betting BitTorrent is still the scourge of Hollywood when this scheme is long gone?

J Mark Lytle was an International Editor for TechRadar, based out of Tokyo, who now works as a Script Editor, Consultant at NHK, the Japan Broadcasting Corporation. Writer, multi-platform journalist, all-round editorial and PR consultant with many years' experience as a professional writer, their bylines include CNN, Snap Media and IDG.