Microsoft goes to the movies
Tue, 11 Dec 2007
Microsoft today launched its Xbox 360 Movie download service for Xbox 360 owners in the UK. The new service enables Xbox 360 owners to download TV shows and movie rentals.
As recently announced by Macworld, the Microsoft Live Marketplace service offers high-definition as well as standard definition movie downloads. Unlike Apple, with the iTunes store, Microsoft has implemented a rental scheme that uses DRM technology to disable a movie after it has been watched.
Films cost a thoroughly reasonable 250 ‘points’ (£2.13) in standard definition and 380 ‘points’ (£3.23) for high-definition versions. Users add ‘points’ to their Xbox Live Marketplace via a credit card (or by purchasing vouchers in shops).
This could cause a major headache for Apple and its floundering Apple TV system. Apple still only offers a small number of TV Shows for sale in the UK, all in standard definition. The Apple TV didn't get off to a flying start, if this report is to be believed; and with Microsoft offering high definition rental downloads in the UK, there are even fewer reasons to purchase an Apple TV.
"We want to give them the entertainment they want, in the format they want, when they want it and at an affordable price", said Robin Truchy, director of Xbox LIVE for Europe, Microsoft Entertainment and Devices Division. "Xbox Live Marketplace Video Store in Europe is all about adding to the ever-expanding number of entertainment choices that our consumers have on their Xbox 360."
Although Microsoft's launch line-up certainly leaves a lot to be desired, it's very much a step in the right direction. We can only hope that Apple follows suit and launches a similar system in the UK.
Microsoft's launch titles include:
CLASH OF THE TITANS
EYES WIDE SHUT
HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE
HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS
LETHAL WEAPON 3
LETHAL WEAPON 4
LOONEY TUNES: BACK IN ACTION
MATRIX REVOLUTIONS, THE
MATRIX RELOADED, THE
PERFECT STORM, THE
Posted by: Mark Hattersley
Yes it looks like MS have got the price about right - all they need now are more films that haven't been on free to air TV already
Rental is the only way to go for films. I'd be amazed if Apple didn't see it this way too - though it is surprising that they haven't gone that way with TV / Film already (Maybe it's because of seeing content for use with iPod and that being more viable with no time limitation)
I also imagine that the film studios are less inclined to jump on board with Apple as they fear that their business will end up dominated by Steve Jobs as happened with music
Either way, Apple need to announce something new to make Apple TV less of a hobby pursuit for SJ.
nom - I love the idea that the Studios are so keen to avoid SJ having control over movie distribution that they're cosying up to Microsoft instead. After all, Microsoft are so famous for not dominating any market.
Out of the frying pan and into the fire ?
There are times when I wonder if the record label bosses and the film distributing bosses are having a competition to see who can do the most spectacularly stupid thing.
Sony got off to a good start with their root kit fiasco, then Universal pulls out from iTunes, NBC strike deals with everybody except Apple and now are having to give advertisers half a million dollars each because nobody is watching or buying their shows. The RIAA are trying to claim that 'fair use' is illegal and to criminalise their customers.Napster hitched on to Microsoft's coat tails and their CFO has just jumped ship before Napster finally hits the rocks. Meanwhile many studios are selling video downloads that are not compatible with the world's most p
As I was saying ....
Meanwhile many studios are selling video downloads that are not compatible with the world's most popular portable video player ( iPod ).
Madness followed by more madness. You couldn't make up stuff like that.
Yeah you're right about the studio bosses, Alan, I think in the end it's all down to ego
there they are at the head of a massive company in charge of all of this 'content' and yet they haven't a clue as to the best way to make it available to the consumer without the consumer either feeling short-changed or not bothering because of the hoops the have to jump through
I think even the studio bosses suspect Jobs has got the balance about right - but if they admit that, they're admitting they been wrong for years - whilst taking home a tidy packet for their ignorance
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