How to transfer DVD and Blu-ray movies to iTunes using Vudu and Movies Anywhere

Posted:
in General Discussion edited October 2017
Wish you could easily convert your DVD or Blu-ray collection to iTunes-compatible digital copies without ripping or DRM hassles? Now you can with Vudu's Disc to Digital program and the new Movies Anywhere service. AppleInsider shows you how it's done.




The migration from physical media to digital has been a slow and often painful process, especially for consumers. Movie lovers who invested significant amounts of cash building out their DVD or Blu-ray collection are frequently forced to purchase separate digital copies of titles they already own.

To help ease the transition, some Hollywood studios have partnered with online stores like iTunes to offer special Blu-ray plus digital bundles that include redemption codes for digital movie copies. A step in the right direction, such programs are not universal and, more importantly, not applicable to older physical discs.

However, recent developments in the streaming space might fill the gap. Vudu's Disc to Digital program, which grants digital copy access by authenticating a DVD or Blu-ray purchase via barcode, launched in 2013 and has grown to support a wide array of films. Previously, digital versions were locked to Vudu's service, meaning users had to go through the Vudu app to access them. Not anymore.

This month, Disney partnered with Sony, Fox, Universal, and Warner Bros. on a new cross-platform product called Movies Anywhere. The service lets users watch and manage purchased content on iTunes, Amazon Video, Google Play and Vudu.





Cross-compatibility between iTunes and Vudu means users can leverage the Disc to Digital program to import movies into their iTunes account. The process has a few steps, but is rather straightforward:

Step 1: Download the Vudu iOS app and create an account.

Step 2: In the Vudu app, tap the Menu button and navigate to Disc to Digital.

Step 3: Allow location access and camera access, then scan a DVD or Blu-ray package barcode.

Note: Converting physical copies to digital requires a per-disc fee. Blu-ray conversions and DVD to standard definition copies cost $2, while DVD to high definition "up-conversions" come in at $5. Users must accept an email confirmation to complete the purchase.

Step 4: Download Movies Anywhere and create an account.

Step 5: Select More from the bottom menu and tap on Manage Retailers.

Step 6: Authorize Movies Now access to both your iTunes and Vudu accounts. You can also connect to Amazon Video and Google Play.

Supported Disc to Digital movies should now be available for download and streaming in iTunes, as well as Apple's TV app.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 39
    I scanned and converted 13 movies to VUDU this evening. Two of them did not appear in Movies Anywhere and thus did not transfer to iTunes: Airplane! (1980) and Donnie Darko (2001).
  • Reply 2 of 39
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    zroger73 said:
    I scanned and converted 13 movies to VUDU this evening. Two of them did not appear in Movies Anywhere and thus did not transfer to iTunes: Airplane! (1980) and Donnie Darko (2001).
    Might not be supported by their studios. 
  • Reply 3 of 39
    sirlance99sirlance99 Posts: 1,159member
    zroger73 said:
    I scanned and converted 13 movies to VUDU this evening. Two of them did not appear in Movies Anywhere and thus did not transfer to iTunes: Airplane! (1980) and Donnie Darko (2001).
    Those films aren’t supported by the distributor. They haven’t signed on to be apart of the Movies Everywhere deal. 
  • Reply 4 of 39
    Very cool. What countries support this?
  • Reply 5 of 39
    Very cool. What countries support this?
    The article doesn’t state it but I checked and it seems that Movies Anywhere is available in just one country in the world at the moment: the US. 

    Hopefully deals will be made with studios that open this up to more countries soon. 
  • Reply 6 of 39
    mr lizard said:
    Very cool. What countries support this?
    The article doesn’t state it but I checked and it seems that Movies Anywhere is available in just one country in the world at the moment: the US. 

    Hopefully deals will be made with studios that open this up to more countries soon. 
    Please let the article state that this applies to the US only. US != World.. though for some you're #1.
  • Reply 7 of 39
    loekf said:
    mr lizard said:
    Very cool. What countries support this?
    The article doesn’t state it but I checked and it seems that Movies Anywhere is available in just one country in the world at the moment: the US. 

    Hopefully deals will be made with studios that open this up to more countries soon. 
    Please let the article state that this applies to the US only. US != World.. though for some you're #1.
    It’s a nice place. 
    john.b
  • Reply 8 of 39
    zroger73 said:
    I scanned and converted 13 movies to VUDU this evening. Two of them did not appear in Movies Anywhere and thus did not transfer to iTunes: Airplane! (1980) and Donnie Darko (2001).
    For your successes what is the bit rate/file size of the Vudu sourced movies? Do they come with 5.1 sound? Are subtitles enabled? Does Vudu have a searchable list of available movies or does one have to scan each DVD and see what happens?
  • Reply 9 of 39
    In Step 1, note that while creating a Vudu account it will ask you to sign up for (or sign into, if you have one) an UltraViolet account. (This should happen almost entirely within Vudu.) This is important because Vudu's D2D program is tied to UV, not Movies Anywhere. UV doesn't work with iTunes directly, but Vudu needs to be linked to UV as well as MA before you can use D2D to load your DVD & Blu-ray library into iTunes.

    At present, only movies supported by Vudu D2D from one of the four studios (Fox, Sony, Universal & Warner Bros.) that support both MA & UV can be loaded into iTunes using D2D. Disney titles are not supported by D2D as Disney doesn't support UV. Titles from Paramount, Lionsgate, MGM and some independent studios may be eligible for D2D in Vudu, but won't go to iTunes as those studios don't support MA. (Most pre-1986 MGM & 1928-48 Paramount movies are now owned by eligible studios; those *will* go to iTunes.) D2D movies eligible for iTunes will have both MA & UV icons on their pages at the Vudu website; don't know about the iOS app as I don't have one, but the MA icon currently doesn't appear in Vudu's Android app (only the UV icon) so I wouldn't be surprised if it doesn't appear in their iOS app either.

    Another side benefit of this tip: If you already had a UV account from trying out a UV retailer -- not only the current ones (only Vudu, FandangoNow, a few studio sites, Verizon FiOS, and high-end movie server Kaleidescape are left), but even defunct ones (CinemaNow, Flixster Video, Nook Video, Target Ticket) as long as they were connected to UV before they shut down (most of those were) -- then linking your old UV account to Vudu, along with linking both Vudu & iTunes to MA, will load your UV titles supported by both Vudu & MA into iTunes for free. UV & MA won't talk to each other directly, but they will connect thru Vudu: UV -> Vudu -> MA -> iTunes, and vice versa. (Note that Verizon FiOS supports UV and did support DMA, but does *not* support MA.)
    fastasleepzroger73
  • Reply 10 of 39
    This technique just pushed me over the edge and I bought an AppleTV 4K so I can watch Alien. It’s not a great 4K set, it’s just the bedroom set. I may just stand right in front so I can “tell the difference” so you can spare me the screeds about how stupid I am for having a 4K set in a bedroom without HDR, blah, blah…

    perhaps I can redeem myself by saying my main theater setup with the Marantz receiver & Martin Logan’s will stay 1080p until I can justify a really big HDR OLED screen. 

    I feel the need to prepare a defense whenever mentioning the topic of 4K.

    But enough of that. 

    Not sure if Apple pulled any strings to get the services to play nice and offer a path to break free our spinning disc media. But in my case, being able to register my Blu-Rays, all of which are fairly new, for a few bucks giving me an instant (if modest) 4K media library and was enough to get me to buy a 4K player. 

    If apple did grease the wheels, I salute the effort. It’s silly it’s taken so long, but I’m thankful we have some upgrade path, finally.
  • Reply 11 of 39
    I created accounts with both, this is what I had always hoped for as I have hundreds of DVD's, but using Vudu's Scan Title, with the first 20 DVD's I tried, I get the same error for all of them– "Location must match billing address" which is exactly where I am lol!

    Oh and anyone experiencing the stuck feeling with inputing your information there, the text you want to use is at the very top in white, on the white background, left side is Back and the right side is Done. When scanning my CC the keypad wouldn't get out of the way so I could tap the Save button behind it. So look closely in that top area.
  • Reply 12 of 39
    Or you can just use Mac dvd ripper and handbrake and covert your disc’s yourself and not have to pay the fee...Smh
    horvatictechconc
  • Reply 13 of 39
    Or you can just use Mac dvd ripper and handbrake and covert your disc’s yourself and not have to pay the fee...Smh
    Not sure why you’re shaking your head. I mean, you can do this, but why go for something so time-consuming for such a worse payoff. This solution gives you on-demand movies on all your devices, no wait, and no server to manage, or extra storage to buy, and gives you a way to get higher resolution versions than you own, to boot.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 14 of 39
    wigbywigby Posts: 692member
    Or you can just use Mac dvd ripper and handbrake and covert your disc’s yourself and not have to pay the fee...Smh
    That's great if you care enough to setup a movie file server but this $2 convenience fee is designed for people that don't want to bother with hardware and software setups.
    edited October 2017
  • Reply 15 of 39
    DENIED SERVICE —Seriously flawed software. The Vudu software requires that your device has a gps signal that then matches your billing address. 1st, the gps signal inside my home is very week and I have lots of trees that block it. 2nd, even if I get a signal my private road street number does not match my gps location. It always shows as another number on the road. And third, this is biggest problem of all, my billing address is my post office box in the center of town. So now they expect me to go to the post office in order to scan the bar codes on the DVD media? I set Up an account and was denied the service because my billing address is not matching the gps location. Many people live in areas where a gps signal does not show inside buildings because of obstructions or the weather. As much as I would like this to work it is not going to happen for me and I expect many others are going to run into similar problems as I have.
    edited October 2017 StrangeDays
  • Reply 16 of 39
    I created a MoviesAnywhere account and linked my iTunes, Amazon, and Vudu accounts to it. I then tried the Vudu D2D services on a number of disks. They all show up in Vudu but only some of them show up in iTunes. My Amazon video purchases also don't show up in iTunes. Not sure why they're missing from iTunes. Anyone else seeing this problem?
  • Reply 17 of 39
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,453member
    I created a MoviesAnywhere account and linked my iTunes, Amazon, and Vudu accounts to it. I then tried the Vudu D2D services on a number of disks. They all show up in Vudu but only some of them show up in iTunes. My Amazon video purchases also don't show up in iTunes. Not sure why they're missing from iTunes. Anyone else seeing this problem?
    Not all studios support the service. In particular Paramount movies,
  • Reply 18 of 39
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,453member
    Some confusion over what exactly iTunes is supporting for Vudu titles.

    i scanned some DVD titles, and a few didn't present the $5 HDX upgrade option, only SD. So I paid the $2 conversion fee. I also had some previous Vudu SD purchases.

    Here's where it gets strange. All of the SD titles show up on iTunes without the HD logo. However, for the SD movies where HD movies exist, they appear to stream in HD, even though they only download in SD. Swiping down on the remote while streaming does not show the HD logo. The SD movies for which there are no HD versions available, also stream without the HD logo, but look substantially worse.

    Now maybe they're SD but exceptional transfers compared to the one that is SD only. But that's kind of a coincidence. Is it possible that Apple is streaming them in HD even though it only shows I own it in SD? 

    I wish there here were a way to confirm what resolution is being streamed at any given time. The Apple TV seems to only report what it's supposed to be, and not what it is. One movie was taking so long to buffer in the beginning that I thought it was SD, even though swioing down said it was HD. The same after pausing for any length of time, and randomly as the Internet connection slows. Other boxes report the actual stream at any given time. And unfortunately the TV can't be used to check it either because it only reports the signal the ATV 4K is sending, not the native source,

    I've also noticed that 4K disks I scanned with VUDU do not show up as 4K on iTunes. Although what's strange is some SD screeners I got through UV on VUDU are showing up on iTunes as HDX, not SD, even though I never even paid for those,

    Anybody know what's going on here?

    EDIT: just noticed iOS 9 doesn't appear to support or recognize any of the additions to the video library from Movies Anywhere. Not sure how to change that. The iTunes Store only offers purchase of those movies.
    edited October 2017
  • Reply 19 of 39
    smaffeismaffei Posts: 223member
    zroger73 said:
    I scanned and converted 13 movies to VUDU this evening. Two of them did not appear in Movies Anywhere and thus did not transfer to iTunes: Airplane! (1980) and Donnie Darko (2001).
    Read the Movies Anywhere fine print. Because not all studios are on board yet. I know for a fact that Pararmount and Lionsgate are not. "Airplane" is a Paramount picture.

    zroger73
  • Reply 20 of 39
    smaffeismaffei Posts: 223member
    Or you can just use Mac dvd ripper and handbrake and covert your disc’s yourself and not have to pay the fee...Smh
    Well… To some of us who make more than $10 an hour,  time is worth more than the money. 

    Say you make $30 an hour (which most of the readers here do)... $2 (for a straight DVD-> 480p conversion) is only 4 minutes of your time. Even with a fast machine, a DVD rip takes at least 30 minutes (and pretty much ties up the machine). You just spent $15 of time to not spend $2.  SMH.
    edited October 2017 StrangeDays
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