“It’s official, if not particularly surprising: Movie downloads have arrived. Consumers are clearly interested in video downloads, but Monday’s news from the major movie studios looks like a pricey experiment,” Alyce Lomax writes for The Motley Fool. “The major movie studios — General Electric’s NBC Universal, Time Warner’s Warner Bros., Sony’s Sony Pictures, Viacom’s Paramount, and News Corp.’s Twentieth Century Fox — will begin to sell downloads of movies simultaneously with the films’ DVD releases. The studios will distribute the movies through Movielink LLC, which is owned by several of the major film studios. (Movielink rival CinemaNow has also made a similar deal with Sony and Lions Gate.) However, consumers will pay through the nose for their digital flick fix. News reports say the download fees will be a steep $20 to $30 for new releases, although older flicks will be considerably cheaper. Although buyers will be able to burn backup DVDs of the movies and watch them on up to three computers, those DVD copies won’t yet play on regular DVD players.”
“Although movie studios want to discourage digital piracy, I think such high price points are likely to backfire,” Lomax writes. “Apple really solidified the idea that consumers would be willing to pay for video downloads with its gradual addition of music videos and TV shows to its iTunes Music Store. To date, however, Apple hasn’t struck a deal with the movie studios. Movie downloads may be here, but given their limitations and high price, I doubt they’ll be a force to reckon with just yet. I wonder if the movie industry will make some of the same mistakes as the music business has; its desire to charge premiums will only serve as a steep psychological barrier to sales, and it might drive tech-savvy consumers to piracy. Nice shot, Hollywood, but this volley seems to have missed the mark.”
Full article here.
“The movies are encoded in Windows Media format, and are about one gigabyte in size. For those who don’t know, movies on DVD are typically about 4-6 GBs. So not only are the movies more expensive and less flexible, they are lower quality too,” Mike evangelist writes for Writer’s Block Live. “I don’t know why I am even surprised by this stuff anymore. It simply continues the efforts of the movie studios and record companies to deliver less and charge more… What are these guys smoking!?”
Full article here.
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Mac users need not apply: Movielink launches Windows-only download service for major motion pictures – April 03, 2006