How is HDCP implemented?

Companies interested in implementing HDCP must first obtain a license from Digital Content Protection LLC, the organization that licenses this technology.

How do I obtain a license to the HDCP technology?

Click here to see the licenses that are available. To become a licensee, please review the Agreements with your legal counsel and engineering team to determine which License is best for your company. Then select the “click here” link for the appropriate Agreement and supply us the email address and name of your company signatory (CEO, President, Vice President, etc.). We will then email that person a link to electronically sign the documents through DocuSign. Once we receive the signed documents and verify they are completed correctly we will issue an invoice for the Annual Fee. Once all required licensing fees have been paid in full, DCP LLC will execute the license and return an electronic copy, for your records along with procedures for ordering device key sets, if applicable, to your Authorized Contact.

How do we change the HDCP Authorized Contact on file for our company?

Please have the current HDCP Authorized Contact (if possible) or your company signatory (CEO, President, Vice President, etc.) email us at info@digital-cp.com advising the Authorized Contact needs to be updated. We will then send that individual the required form through DocuSign.

Does DCP offer a discount for smaller companies?

Although we understand the difficulties small companies face, we cannot presently accommodate different levels of production.

What happens if we do not renew our license?

Any adopter that does not renew their license must immediately stop all use of HDCP. As stated in Section 9 of the HDCP License Agreement, "upon termination of this Agreement any licenses to Adopter hereunder immediately shall terminate and Adopter shall immediately cease all use of HDCP, Device Keys, Device Key Sets and the HDCP Specification."

If our company needs to pay a withholding tax, can we just deduct that tax from the amount that is paid to DCP LLC?

No. As stated in Exhibit A, section 1.4 of the HDCP License Agreement, all taxes and fees must be paid such that the amount received by the DCP is equal to the balance due.

My company was purchased by another company; how can we change the agreement over to the new company?

To transfer the HDCP License Agreement to a different company, the licensee will need to send an original letter on company letterhead explaining all the details of the transfer of assets. Please confirm in the letter that the transfer will follow the terms and conditions as stated in Section 12.3 of the HDCP License Agreement.

When will my annual fee invoice be sent to me each year?

A signed copy of the annual fee invoice is sent out 60 days before your HDCP License Agreement will expire. A copy of the invoice is sent as a reminder 30 days before your expiration date.

Can we have more than one authorized contact for our company?

No, there can only be one HDCP Authorized Contact per company assigned to receive Highly Confidential information such as Device Key sets. In addition, we send all corresondence and invoices to that individual and ask they forward the information onto the appropriate paties within their own company.

What is the cost per unit sold (royalties) for each HDCP Licensed Component and or Product?

DCP does not charge Adopters for each unit that is produced or sold.

What is the turn-around time for a license agreement?

After DCP receives your Annual Fee in full, your HDCP Agreement is sent to DCP's President for electronic countersignature. This process can take up to 5 business days.

How was the effective date of my agreement determined?

The agreement is effective as of the latest date set out on the signature page, which is always the date that DCP countersigned.

If our HDCP License Agreement is terminated, are we able to reinstate it in the future?

No, if your agreement is terminated, you must restart the licensing process from the beginning.

We paid the full fee, so why was my wire transfer short?

The charge is not imposed by our bank but by intermediary banks and financial institutions for forwarding on your wire transfer. Unless otherwise noted, these institutions will simply deduct their fees from the payment you are sending, thus making the wire transfer received by DCP short. We suggest that you first check with your bank regarding the intermediary bank charges as we cannot determine what additional fees will be charged.


Where can we find sample keys?

Sample device keys for testing purposes are included in Appendix A, page 58, of the specification. Please note that these sample keys will not work in the field, and therefore should not be used in a real product.

How do we order HDCP Device Key sets?

Follow the steps below.

  • Step 1. Please complete Appendix A of the Signing Facility User’s Guide and submit it by email in a PDF format to info@digital-cp.com. If an invoice is needed to generate the payment, we can provide one for you once the completed order form has been received.
  • Step 2. Generate your key pair. Instructions are detailed in the Signing Facility User's Guide in the section titled "Cryptographic Protection for Orders". 
  • Step 3. Email your public key to info@digital-cp.com.
  • Step 4. Fax your key fingerprint to +1-503-644-6708 for verification of your public key. 
  • Step 5. Make payment in full. Please allow at least 30 days for processing orders after an acceptable order form and payment in full is received by the DCP. Express processing, which requires about 7 business days, is also available for an additional fee. Actual turn-around time for order fulfillment may vary depending on the volume of devices being ordered and the number of pending orders.
What is the cost for express processing?

$5,000 USD per "Multiplier".

What is the smallest number of Device Key sets that can be purchased?

The quantities and prices for key orders are listed below:

Description Cost (USD)
HDCP 1.x Transmitter or Receiver Key - Qty of 10,000 $2,000  USD
HDCP 1.x Transmitter or Receiver Key - Qty of 100,000 $5,000  USD
HDCP 1.x Transmitter or Receiver Key - Qty of 1,000,000 $10,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Annual Source Key Fee - Up to 100/year $500  USD
HDCP 2.x Annual Source Key Fee - Up to 1K per year $1,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Annual Source Key Fee - Up to 10K per year $2,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Annual Source Key Fee - Up to 100K per year $5,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Annual Source Key Fee - Up to 1M per year $10,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Annual Source Key Fee - For quantities over 1M per year $20,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Receiver Key - Qty of 10,000 $2,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Receiver Key - Qty of 100,000 $5,000  USD
HDCP 2.x Receiver Key - Qty of 1,000,000 $10,000  USD


What is HDCP revision 2.0?

High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection revision 2.0 is used to encrypt premium content at the final stage of the content distribution process. It encrypts content as it flows throughout the home from source devices such as DVD players and notebook computers to display devices such as High-definition TVs (HDTVs). It defines a standard, interoperable method for supporting wireless interfaces, including the ubiquitous Wi-Fi standard. HDCP revision 2.0 uses industry-standard public-key RSA authentication and AES 128 encryption. It also supports protection of compressed content, making it feasible to use relatively slow 50 to 200 Mbps interfaces. HDCP revision 2.0 also protects transmission of uncompressed content over faster 5 to 10 Gbps links.

Why is HDCP revision 2.0 needed?

HDCP revision 2.0 reflects the latest evolution of the widely accepted HDCP technology that protects premium entertainment content between a digital set-top box, digital video recorder or Blu-ray disk player and a digital TV. HDCP revision 2.0 supports a broader range of digital and wireless interfaces.

How is it different from HDCP 1.x?

HDCP 1.x technology offers protection for uncompressed content transmitted over several common wired interfaces including DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort. HDCP revision 2.0 adds strengthened encryption and a locality check, among other new capabilities, to support scenarios requiring compressed content and wireless transmission.

Which interfaces use HDCP revision 2.0?

The wireless interfaces which utilize HDCP revision 2.0 so far include: Digital Interface for Video and Audio (DiiVA), NetHD, Wireless Home Digital Interface (WHDI), and Wireless HD (WiHD). Additional HDCP revision 2.0 specifications for specific implementations will follow in the months ahead.

If another wired interface standard like USB emerges as a common content delivery mechanism, would DCP LLC modify the 1.x specifications that were written for wired interfaces, or release a new flavor of HDCP revision 2.0?

DCP LLC evaluates many factors before making a new specification available, including the unique characteristics of that interface. There will be new interfaces supported under HDCP 1.x and HDCP revision 2.0 as both specifications evolve and new interfaces are developed.

How does HDCP revision 2.0 facilitate correct association between devices?

HDCP revision 2.0 uses device pairing and locality check. The device pairing is similar to the way a Bluetooth headset pairs to a phone, but it will be automatic and transparent to consumers. Locality check ensures that source devices can only transmit content to repeaters or display devices located in the same home or building. This is accomplished via a timing mechanism.

How would a consumer use HDCP 1.x enabled devices and HDCP revision 2.0 enabled devices in the same home theater set up?

This will be accomplished with repeaters or active converters that have an HDCP 1.x interface (such as HDMI or DisplayPort) and an HDCP revision 2.0 interface. This will enable any source to sink scenario for consumers.

When are HDCP revision 2.0 enabled products due on the market?

Please inquire with individual device manufacturers regarding their specific product plans and expected availability.

Which electronics manufacturers have plans to implement HDCP revision 2.0 in their products?

Please inquire with individual device manufacturers regarding their specific product plans and expected availability. We can tell you that many of the major device manufacturers that currently license HDCP 1.x have plans to implement HDCP revision 2.0.

What is the difference between HDCP revision 2.0 and DTCP?

Like HDCP 1.x, HDCP revision 2.0 is a render-only technology. It does not provide the ability to copy or store content, like Digital Transmission Content Protection (DTCP) does. Content that is protected by DTCP can transition to protection by HDCP, but HDCP protected content cannot transition to protection by DTCP.

The DTLA recently approved WirelessHD as an approved interface for DTCP. How do device manufacturers decide whether they would enable a device with HDCP or DTCP or both?

This is a decision for device manufacturers but these content protection systems generally serve different purposes.

Does HDCP revision 2.0 forward the copy allowance data that might be in upstream DTCP content?

Because HDCP protected content always terminates at a display device for rendering only, there is no need for the content to carry copy allowance data.

How will the licensing work for current HDCP adopters?

To use HDCP revision 2.x, manufacturers need to license the specification from DCP, LLC.  To use HDCP revision 2.x, existing HDCP licensees simply sign an addendum and the License Agreement for Current Adopters; they are not required to pay additional fees. New adopters will need to sign the existing License Agreement and the addendum to license HDCP revision 2.x. To view all available Agreements, please click here.

Will a test specification be made available, and if so, when would that be?

The compliance test specification for HDCP revision 2.0 interface independent adaptation is under development and will be published to the DCP Web site when available.

Will test equipment be available?

Once the compliance test specification is completed, the development of HDCP revision 2.0 test equipment will be possible.

Will there be authorized test centers for HDCP revision 2.0 interfaces?

If a need is determined, Authorized Test Centers will be created to support HDCP revision 2.0 testing. These may or may not be located at current HDCP 1.x Authorized Test Centers.

What does TMDS stand for?

TMDS stands for Transition-Minimized Differential Signaling. This is the high-speed signaling standard utilized by HDMI and DVI for transmission of uncompressed digital video and audio. The TMDS signals are encrypted using HDCP to protect High Definition content.

What interfaces can utilize HDCP?

HDCP is licensed for use on HDMI/DVI, DisplayPort, GVIF and UDI interfaces.

What is the difference between a “Licensed Component” and a “Licensed Product”?

The HDCP License Agreement defines a “Licensed Component” as a product, such as an integrated circuit, circuit board, or software module, that is designed to be used as part of a Licensed Product and that embodies a portion of the HDCP Specification, but that does not embody the entire HDCP Specification or does not completely satisfy the Compliance Rules and the Robustness Rules.

The Agreement defines “Licensed Product” as a product or combination of Licensed Components, including but not limited to a software application, hardware device or combination thereof, that (a) implements the HDCP Specification and complies with all requirements of the HDCP Specification not expressly identified as optional or informative and (b) is Compliant.

What are the “facsimile keys” in the specification used for?

The facsimile keys are included in the specification as a means to test products under development. They can be used to evaluate that a device properly indexes and generates the secret values without having to maintain the secrecy required for “real” keys. The specification provides a step-by-step walk through of an authentication utilizing the facsimile keys. If the device under development is able to accomplish the same process, and generate the same values, the adopter can be certain that their device is functioning correctly, and will generate the appropriate values once the “real” keys have been loaded. They are to be used strictly for developmental purposes only as they will not authenticate with devices that contain “real” keys, nor will they pass compliance testing.

Is my source device required to support repeaters, per the specification?

Per the specification, the Source is required to support repeaters (devices whose repeater bit in BCAPS is set to 1) to be compliant. Even if your Source device supports only a Source Max KSV of 1, it is still able to support a Repeater with a single downstream device as the Repeater only reports the downstream device’s BKSV in the KSV FIFO, and the Source authenticates with the Repeater’s BKSV separately.

How do I schedule a test time for the HDCP Lab?

The lab test schedule is based on a first come, first served basis, and only supports one adopter per week. To request a test time, please email your request to hdcplab@vtm-inc.com with your request, and you will be notified of available times. There is no fee if you accompany your device to the lab.

Do I have to accompany my device to test in the HDCP Lab?

No, you may ship your device to us for testing; however, the following fees will be charged:

  • Sink: $1,500 USD
  • Source: $2,000 USD
  • Repeater: $2,500 USD

The adopter is responsible for payment of all shipping costs associated with the delivery and return of the device. Once we receive the device, we will notify you of the week in which it will be tested, and will provide all test logs and reports upon completion. There is no fee if you accompany your device to the lab.

Can I make software/firmware changes to my device during testing?

If you accompany your device to the lab for testing, you may make changes to the software and/or firmware as needed to address any problems identified during testing as long as you do not need to extend your visit beyond a three-day period.

If you ship your device to the lab unaccompanied, we will make a best effort to upgrade firmware per instructions you provide. Your request and directions release us of liability should the software/firmware update be unsuccessful.

What are the testing requirements for HDCP, HDMI and Simplay Authorized Test Centers (ATCs)? Are logos and self-tests available?

The HDCP license agreement requires that devices be compliant, that is, meet the requirements of the HDCP specification and the Compliance Test Specification. The license agreement does not require any specific testing.

HDCP does not have a logo program. HDMI does have, but does not require a specific test to use it. The Simplay logo may only be used after a device has passed testing at a Simplay Labs facility. Here is a summary of testing requirements:

HDCP: Self-test, yes; logo program, no. Passing test at an Authorized Test Center (ATC) allows the device to be listed on digital-cp.com web site.

HDMI: Self-test, yes; logo program, no. Passing test at an ATC allows the device to be listed on hdmi.org web site.

Simplay: Self-test, no; logo program, yes. Passing test at an ATC allows the device to be listed on simplayhd.com web site.

Note: This information is correct at time of publication. Check HDMI and Simplay web sites for up-to-date test requirements.

Can a device convert an HDMI or DVI signal encrypted with HDCP to some other format, i.e., to component or composite video output?

No, content encrypted with HDCP must maintain that encryption until the content is displayed on a Presentation Device. Removal of encryption to convert to another format that does not have approved content protection technology is not allowed.

Are the devices for sale on the Internet that convert from HDMI+HDCP to some other output like RGB legal? Some are called “HDCP Strippers.”

Any device that removes HDCP encryption from content before it reaches a Presentation Device (i.e., a device that is connected by cables between the Source and the Display) may be in violation of the terms of the HDCP License Agreement. Please notify us at hdcp-lab@vtm-inc.com, and we will investigate.

Why do we need HDCP at all? Aren’t there enough digital rights management (DRM) schemes already in the marketplace? Why impose another standard to limit how content can be shown?

HDCP is not DRM; it is copy protection. DRM defines whether a consumer has the right to view the content, i.e. paid the license fee. HDCP assures that the HDMI interface over which the content will be played is secured against unauthorized copying.

HDCP does not limit how content is viewed, it only secures the HDMI interface. Without HDCP (and other copy protection technologies), content providers may not make their premium content available in High Definition formats.

Are broadcast (over the air) television, cable and satellite programs scrambled with HDCP?

No, HDCP only protects HDMI, DisplayPort, UDI or GVIF interfaces. HDCP is not used to scramble any form of content before it reaches the connection between the Receiver (Set-top box, satellite, antenna). Those signals are on the upstream side of the device. The downstream side (connection between Receiver and TV or other Display) is where HDCP is used.

What happens when the US TV stations go all-digital? Will I need a new TV with HDCP?

Today’s analog TV signals are scheduled to transition to all digital in 2009. If the Receiver uses HDCP on the downstream side (connection to the TV), then the TV will need HDCP to display the content properly. Analog TVs receiving over-the-air programming will still work after that date, but owners of these TVs will need to buy converter boxes to change digital broadcasts into analog format. Converter boxes will be available from consumer electronic products retailers at that time. Cable and satellite subscribers with analog TVs should contact their service providers about obtaining converter boxes for the DTV transition.

Is it required to use HDCP when playing standard DVDs that are protected with CSS over an HDMI interface? Does the requirement change if the signal is up-converted to HD format?

The Source device invokes HDCP on the downstream interface when the Upstream

Content Protection Flag is set. To say that it is required for DVD or any other content is outside the purview of HDCP.

What are some upstream formats that have approved HDCP?

The following are examples of upstream formats that have approved HDCP:

  • AACS
  • DTCP
  • CPPM
  • CPRM
  • ARIB (Japan)
  • DVB (Europe)
  • Cable Labs
  • CSS
  • Microsoft Media DRM