Disney and the other studios don't get it (big surprise, huh?)
CNET: According to Disney, MovieBeam will feature 100 films that can be downloaded at any time, with 10 new titles rotated in each week. Once customers download a movie to the hard drive of the MovieBeam device--a set-top receiver manufactured specifically for Disney by Samsung--they gain access to the content for a 24-hour period.

The CNET article makes this service sound revolutionary. When we had digital cable with Charter Communications, we had a very similar type of service through Charter included with the digital cable package. You paid about $3.99 per movie and could select from probably 100-200 movies. So why is this big news? Is it because it's Disney? I'm not sure why I'm supposed to get all psyched about being able to rent/download from a 100 film selection. That's not even mentioning the fact that you have to rent the required hardware. Why not just bundle this with cable or satellite TV and building it into a Tivo like device that serves as the receiver as well as provide the PVR and on demand movie features? I don't get it. If the service provided the same selection as NetFlix, was a part of digital cable/satellite, had PVR capabilities and came bundled with digital cable or satellite service then I would be tempted to buy into it. Until then, I guess the studios will have to figure out that consumers don't care much for limited selection, more hardware requirements, more monthly fees and a total lack of integration of features that should be in one single device.
Posted on 09/29/03 - Category: Technology

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