I want to watch some specific films on my iPad. They aren’t currently available for purchase digitally, just as DVDs (at least the versions I want).
Here’s what I’m trying to figure out:
Can I hook an external DVD player up to an USB-C iPad and actually play the DVD straight from there?
Is there a way to transfer the movie directly to the iPad and watch it without the physical disk?
These are commercial DVDs — so relevant DRM would apply. I checked with the publisher and they don’t offer a digital download copy of the films if you purchased the DVD copies.
Doesn’t seem like there’s a feasible hardware solution for this.
The most likely alternative options would be to
Dig out my old xBox from the closet and fire that up on an external monitor. Or
Get an external DVD player that connects to my laptop and watch from there.
Do you have a Mac on Hand?
I would recommend Handbrake
to rip (allowed for private use in a lot of countries, check your local regulations!) the DVD onto your Mac, and then you could transfer it to your iPad.
If Handbrake is not able to read the DVD due to the specific kind of DRM, you could install the VLC-Player on your Mac, that comes with the “libdvdcss”-File, that is missing on Handbrake, depending on your macOS-Version.
If there is a DRM on the DVD, you have good chances that, even if it would be possible to connect a DVD-Player directly with your iPad, the HDCP-Restrictions would prevent the DVD from running.
I do have one available and I’ll likely end up doing that, if I can find a good enough external dvd player for cheap. At the very least I can watch on my laptop at my desk, if nothing else (assuming handbrake won’t work for the DRM).
It does seem like a shortcoming for iPads….I can’t see any reason to not allow playing media from an external DVD player.
iPads were introduced when DVD sales were already in a sharp decline and streaming video becoming popular.
And Apple were/are in the business of selling digital movies and now video streaming subscriptions. So little point in cannibalising those sales by offering DVD playback on iPads - that‘s a good reason.