Feeds

Amazon opens (American) video streaming shop

Down with downloads

Website security in corporate America

Amazon's new streaming video storefront has gone live today, replacing the online retailer's previous attempt at vending digital video via downloads.

Amazon Video on Demand arrives about two months after service was introduced as a beta build to a limited number of US customers.

The store now lets users stream commercial-free movies or TV shows on either a Mac or PC web browser. Amazon previously required customers to download and watch titles through their Unbox application or TiVo.

While Video on Demand now lets customers rent or buy titles and view them instantly, the Unbox app is still required to access videos when not online. Keep in mind non-streaming downloads are currently viewable offline to PC users only, as Unbox is still not available for Mac. (Gee thanks, DRM!)

Amazon has also inked a deal with Sony to let content be streamed directly to compatible Bravia television sets. This feature of course has an extremely limited audience, but is never-the-less a promising sign of things to come should this sort of thing be extended to a wider range of sets.

The online storefront itself resembles a typical Amazon.com page. When a user clicks on a show or movie, they're directed to a two-minute preview, where after the etailer prompts for some legal tender to continue.

A typical TV show costs about $2. Movies are $3 to $4 to rent, $10 to $15 to purchase. Amazon claims to have over 40,000 movies and TV shows available now. The store boasts films and shows from all the major studios and networks — with the exception of Walt Disney and its ABC subsidiary. They're beholden to Apple.

And perhaps it's not terribly surprising the two aren't onboard with Amazon, as the service is clearly made to compete with Apple's iTunes store.

They've even got a (fake) Front Row-type thing going on.

But it would seem most studios and networks have chosen to let their content be served from several online providers rather than let one dominate the medium. Perhaps they've learned a thing or two from the music industry trying to squirm away from Apple's musical monopoly.

We should note there are some other (legal) streaming TV and movie services available stateside, including Hulu.com, which offers its content gratis so long as viewers tolerate commercial interruptions. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.