As cinemas across the world continue to feel the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, US tech company Christie has been granted a patent that enables cinemas to stream films directly into viewers’ homes.

The patented hardware and software package combines with Christie’s suite of streaming and networking products to enable the company’s partners to deliver content over IP networks to viewers at home in real time, directly from the cinema to the sofa.

According to Christie, the system follows its security specifications and could support delivery options from compressed H.265 streams at 4Mbps to uncompressed 8K at 120Hz at 100Gbps, which the company said offers “zero latency over affordable ethernet components.”

“This technology enables exhibitors to securely show customers premium cinematic content on their own terms, opening an additional potential revenue stream, in these difficult times,” said Brian Claypool, executive vice president, cinema, Christie.

“We are always looking at ways to improve the cinema experience and support our exhibitors with the latest innovations, and this patent is another example of that. Offering premium content direct to consumers is now a reality and Christie’s patented approach places the dynamics of when, how and for how much that content is made available to consumers directly in the hands of exhibitors to decide.”

The patent has been issued by the US patent office as well as in Europe. Christie said it is patent pending in other regions.