Windows 8 will not include the ability to play DVD movies natively; yes, it’s true! Premium editions of Windows Vista and most editions of Windows 7 did, but it’s all being undone with Windows 8. But the big question is, do you care? Here are the reasons as to why many traditional playback, such as DVD and broadcast TV playback, are going away.

Media landscape is changing fast.

We are consuming more and more media from the internet, believe it or not. Places like YouTube and Netflix are quickly taking over the reigns that physical media and traditional broadcast held for so long. According to a research done by HIS Screen Digest, internet media consumption will overtake physical media consumption by the end of 2012 in the United States.

Windows 8 focuses on supporting online media over physical media. The new operation system will support common online media services, such as YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and natively support codecs that allow media in standard format, like H.264 and HTML5 video tag, are able to play without a hiccup. Developers will be able to use these codecs to enable video and audio playback on

Supporting traditional media is costly

The royalty fees associated with including the ability to play DVDs, support TV tuners and other proprietary media codecs are pricy. According to Microsoft, they are taking a toll on the industry as a whole. Because Windows 8 will support a wider range of devices, such as tablets as well as PCs, it will raise prices for everyone. These royalty fees cover many technology that most PCs and devices won’t include, like a DVD drive or a TV tuner, making the extra fees useless.

With Windows 8, we can expect to see lower prices in areas that otherwise would cost more because we no longer would have to play these royalty fees. However, if anyone wants to use those features with Windows 8, they can purchase the “Media Pack” that will be priced to cover the royalty fees. The “Media Pack” will allow the playback of DVD movies, recording of broadcast TV, and other traditional media features.

Do you care?

I want to know if this move will be affecting you. Of course, if you have Windows 7 or Vista with these features, you can stick with it or purchase the “media pack”. I would suggest that you use the free VLC media player, which plays DVD movies rather nicely. But for many, the change might not even be noticeable. And with the new features to let internet content shine, we might see some great apps and technology that are powered by the new medium. Let us know your thoughts by commenting below; I look forward to hearing your response.