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Thread: Two New Netflix Rivals - One With Films Currently In Cinemas, One That You Could Afford

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    Default Two New Netflix Rivals - One With Films Currently In Cinemas, One That You Could Afford

    US consumers who like to stream movies at home now have two new, and very distinct, options. One of them might actually catch on, just perhaps; the other will offer the very films currently playing in your local multiplex.

    First of all, there's the clumsily titled, brand-tasticRedbox Instant by Verizon. Details were uncovered by GigaOm digging around online, and here are the bullet points:
    • Access to the streaming catalogue is set at $6 per month.
    • If you pay $8 per month, you also get four credits to use for physical rentals from Redbox kiosks.
    • There are also PAYG purchases and rentals, starting at 99 cents - though some are likely to cost a good bit more.
    • The service will launch with web, iOS, Android, and X-Box 360 compatability. And the web version uses Silverlight, as with Netflix.
    It's not expected that the streaming catalogue will be able to compete with Netflix, so I guess the appeal is in the $8 option and those physical rental credits.

    Neither the Netflix and Redbox option will be offering the same films as are playing in cinemas - well, not for the next five or six years at least, say I, with my Carnac turban on - but if you do want to pipe the newest of releases into your den, there actually is a service, already, that will allow you to do this.

    Gizmag this week profiled the Prima system which has recently rolled out into homes. For just $35,000 you can purchase a secure server that will give you access to fresh films, straight down the wires. Not cheap.

    And less cheap when you consider that each film you stream will cost you a rental fee of $500 on top. Well, except for the 3D ones, which are $600.

    It isn't clear if that fee covers one play, a certain number of plays, or a certain period of access, but either way, it's not really what I'd consider a bargain. And don't go thinking that you can charge admission to turn this into a commercial proposition - while you can invite friends around, ticket prices are strict no-no.

    Just like all of those other business transactions people might engage in off the radar, of course. Could we be looking at the rise of the back alley, speakeasy cinema?

    It also isn't clear which distributors or studios have licensed their films to Prima. Would we literally be able to get anything at all that's out there on general release? How about from day of release?

    On the upside, the tech specs sound not too bad at all:
    PRIMA?s Shawn Yeager told us that the player delivers 30 percent more color than Blu-ray, and 25 percent more pixel depth. Its HDMI 1.4 output will reportedly work with any projector or surround sound system.
    My cinema habit is pretty expensive and I spend way more than my fair share on DVDs and Blu-rays, but I can only dream of Prima being a viable option for me. And I will dream of that, I'm sure. Literally.

    Sigh. Anyway, while I wait to win a lottery that I don't even play... Viva la Netflix!

  2. #2

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    I think the only way Redbox Instant can compete with Netflix or even Amazon's Instant service is to have recent DVD releases at a cheap 99 cent rental cost. Right now, I could stream Lawless on my tv for $3.99 through Amazon for 48 hours.

    I'd like to see a monthly subscription service for the new releases/non-free movies. Would be nice if it would be around $20, but feel for something like that to be profitable and not tick off movie studios, it would have to be double that or more.

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    Captain Cool Jason A. Quest's Avatar
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    I call bullshit on Prima having major studio buy-in. In addition to the obvious outcome of subscribers running gray-market cinema "clubs", it's an invitation to piracy. These are the members of the MPAA, who know better than anyone that DRM can and will be cracked, and that those streams of new releases will be captured and on the torrents before the 7pm Friday showings start.
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    Wrote the Book on Cool Anthony Lucynski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason A. Quest View Post
    I call bullshit on Prima having major studio buy-in. In addition to the obvious outcome of subscribers running gray-market cinema "clubs", it's an invitation to piracy. These are the members of the MPAA, who know better than anyone that DRM can and will be cracked, and that those streams of new releases will be captured and on the torrents before the 7pm Friday showings start.
    Indeed, my thoughts exactly. Now, I do think Redbox could compete with Netflix streaming. If their streaming service is anything like their Redbox titles, then they could have an edge on the new movies that Netflix is sadly missing (with some hits now and again). I like Netflix for their TV series and classic stuff more than anything. My only beef is when they take something off that I'm in the middle of watching (Stargate: Atlantis comes to mind) and I have no choice but to go to Amazon to catch the remainder.

    If Redbox could learn from their competitors mistakes, we have a player on hand.

    Anthony L
    "Bleeding Cool? Bleeding Pathetic! I'm out of here." - Lew Stringer

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony Lucynski View Post
    Indeed, my thoughts exactly. Now, I do think Redbox could compete with Netflix streaming. If their streaming service is anything like their Redbox titles, then they could have an edge on the new movies that Netflix is sadly missing (with some hits now and again). I like Netflix for their TV series and classic stuff more than anything. My only beef is when they take something off that I'm in the middle of watching (Stargate: Atlantis comes to mind) and I have no choice but to go to Amazon to catch the remainder.

    If Redbox could learn from their competitors mistakes, we have a player on hand.

    Anthony L
    FUCK!

    I was going to watch Stargate Atlantis - almost finished my Star Trek rewatch and had found that on Netflix a while ago. Now both it and B5 are gone.

    FUCKERS

    (Whoever pulled them off)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lemurion View Post
    FUCK!

    I was going to watch Stargate Atlantis - almost finished my Star Trek rewatch and had found that on Netflix a while ago. Now both it and B5 are gone.

    FUCKERS

    (Whoever pulled them off)

    Play the extra 2 or whatever it is for unlock.us and you'll find that that star trek will be on one of regions.

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    Anti-Moderator _OM_'s Avatar
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    ...From what I've heard amongst the bitchings, Prima downloads are for one-time viewing, and are time-locked so that you've only got 24 hours from the time you downloaded the film to watch it. The problem is that if you come across some technical issue - i.e., loss of power and/or network access due to weather or some other unforeseen action - you *won't* get a refund or a reset on the time-lock. Apparently the notion is that if you can afford to buy the Prima setup to begin with, then you probably won't even notice that you just got fucked out of $500.00 USD at the very minimum.
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