Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 don’t come with DVD/Blu-ray video playback support built-in. If you’re running Windows 8 or Windows 8.1, you can search for a DVD player app in the Windows Store. If you have Windows 8.1 Pro, you can also buy the Windows 8.1 Media Center Pack that includes DVD playback. If you only have the standard version of Windows 8, you will need to purchase the Windows 8 Pro Pack. Once you have Media Center installed, you will be able to play DVDs — but only in Media Center, not Media Player.
Windows RT 8.1 doesn’t support DVD/Blu-ray movie playback, and the Media Center Pack isn’t available for Windows RT 8.1. Microsoft removed DVD and Blu-ray support because many new ultrabooks and tablets don’t have DVD drives, so they don’t want to pay DVD and Blu-ray license fees for every Windows license they ship.
There is a very simple reason for this: The codecs required to play DVDs and Blu-rays — primarily MPEG-2/4 for video and Dolby Digital for audio — cost money. For every copy of Windows 7 sold, Microsoft has to pay MPEG-LA (a patent-holding consortium) $2. Microsoft doesn’t give the exact figure for a Dolby Digital license, but it’s probably in the same ballpark. This cost is passed on to the consumer, whether you play DVDs or not. For Windows 8/8.1, with streaming services taking hold and optical drives dying out, Microsoft basically decided that it wasn’t worth paying for the codecs. If you do want to play Blu-ray/DVDs on Windows 8 or Windows 8.1, there are three excellent windows 8 blu-ray player Software.
Like VLC, KMPlayer is a versatile open source multimedia application for playing DVDs on Windows 8. And like both VLC and GOM, it contains its own internal codecs and is able to play virtually any media file you throw at it. It’s fast, and doesn’t take up a lot of computer resources. It was recently purchased by Pandora and has new features to organize video, music, cover art, and an upcoming app store.
VLC Media Player
VLC plays DVDs and almost everything else out there. It’s completely free and open source. Just download the VLC player, install it, and pop in a DVD disc. Open the VLC application, click the Media menu, select Open Disc, and choose your DVD drive. When you put in a DVD, VLC will skip straight to the menu or the movie itself, skipping all those obnoxious piracy warnings and long trailers.
VLC also supports some AACS encrypted Blu-ray discs, and you need read this how to get Get VLC 2.0 to Play encrypted DVD/Blu-ray on Windows 8. Unfortunately, commercial Blu-ray movies generated with BD+ DRM encrypted. You can try using the third-party BD+ DRM dynamic library to make VLC play encrypted Blu-ray discs on Windows 8 — if you’re looking for a Windows 8 Blu-ray player and don’t want to shell out any money, it’s worth a shot.
UFUWare Windows 8 Blu-ray Player
UFUWare Blu-ray Player Software is all-inclusive media player software to play back Blu-ray disc, common videos and up to 1080P HD videos smoothly on Windows 8.1/8/7. As professional Blu-ray media player software, UFUWare Windows 8 Blu-ray Player could play back the newest Blu-ray discs released in the market on Windows 8.1/8/7/Vista/XP. It could play back common videos, up to 1080P videos and audios in almost all formats with lossless quality. With various advanced audio decoding technologies like Dolby, DTS, AAC, TrueHD, DTS-HD, etc. built in, UFUWare Blu-ray Player for Windows 8 delivers extraordinary audio effect.
For better user experience, it provides detailed navigation and full playback control and allows people to adjust subtitles, audio tracks and videos during playback, customize background picture and switch program skins, support multi-languages and multiple screen displays, etc. People could add videos to the internal playlist for continuous movie enjoying. With UFUWare Windows 8 Blu-ray Player, HD movie enjoyment on Windows would be greatly improved.
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