Posted May 8, 2011 by Marcia Degia - Publisher in Features
 
 

Movie Streaming


A World of Entertainment at Your Finger Tips.

A World of Entertainment at Your Finger Tips.

The film industry hasn’t escaped consumers’ obsession with demanding goods as streamlined as possible. We’ve already said goodbye to dusty CD racks and welcomed the iPod and in all its compactable glory and Kindles are growing in popularity as an alternative to hoarding around bulky books. Now, consumers are demanding an easier more compact way of renting and viewing movies at home. In fact, spending at traditional video rental shops was down by 36 percent in the US last year. So, say goodbye to your local blockbuster store (as many already have) and embrace another, more convenient form of home entertainment.

The Pro’s of Movie Streaming

Movie streaming is an alternative to physical movie rental or purchasing. It means you can choose from thousands of newly released DVDs to watch instantly on your PC and even purchase some to own forever. No long walks to your local ‘video’ shop, no late fees and no physical DVDs for your dog to chew up. There is an extensive range of content available so you won’t be missing out on anything, plus it’s cheaper to run than bricks and mortar shops and this is often reflected in the price.

It’s a minefield out there…

As idealistic as this sounds, the world of movie streaming is a fairly new conception and fraught with complications and legality issues, like its music counterpart. Only recently it was revealed that U.S movie streaming website Zediva is being sued by six Hollywood film studios who believe the website infringes upon their copyright. Of course, we all know that there are countless other sites that encourage downloading illegally but you may run the risk of plaguing your computer with nasty viruses. Another draw-back is you’ll either be watching movies on a small lap top or huge desktop depending on what computer you own.

Who should you use?

There are movie streaming alternatives to illegal downloading, all well above board, that, quite frankly we can’t enough of! FilmJuice rates LoveFilm and Blinkbox. Here’s why…

LoveFilm

Mostly known for its DVD rental scheme whereby subscribers create a list of 10 or more DVDs they wish to watch, which LoveFilm then sends out on a first available basis. The good news is that they also offer streaming of thousands of films, meaning you can watch a wide range of movies as soon as you sign up. It has 964 titles that are available on pay-per-view, but you can also sign up to a monthly subscription, however, depending on what subscription you chose you’ll only be able to view a few films per month via streaming. They also offer streaming direct to your TV if you have a LoveFilm ready device such as a Samsung TV or Sony PlayStation 3. Although you can buy physical DVDs from Love Film you can’t buy streamed films.

The Cost

A single stream costs £3.49 per view while subscription packages cost from £5.99 for two hours streaming, one disc at a time and a maximum of three discs a month to the ultimate package, which costs £19.99 a month for three discs out at a time, unlimited films, TV and games, plus unlimited streaming.

Blinkbox

Probably less known than its rival, LoveFilm, who also offer streaming, is our favourite of the bunch Blinkbox. Set up by former Channel 4 and Vodafone executives in 2008, it currently has over one million unique users every month. Blinkbox allows users to stream paid-for feature titles alongside free, advert-supported TV and film content. It has amassed a catalogue of over 6,000 leading Hollywood blockbuster films and the best US TV series, with additional content becoming available every month. Because of its deals with leading studios and producers movies can be streamed on the same day they come to DVD and new episodes of US TV shows, such as Fringe, Gossip Girl, Heroes and 30 Rock can be viewed the day after they are broadcast. Rental content can be streamed directly on to a Mac or PC, and can be viewed an unlimited number of times over a 24-hour period, commencing from the moment you start to watch the movie. With films such as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and Monsters being available almost immediately you won’t miss out on any of the blockbusters. There is also the option to buy; movies can be streamed on an unlimited basis directly from Blinkbox to any Mac or PC, so as long as you’re logged-in to your Blinkbox account you can view your buy-to-own content stored in your own virtual library.

The Cost

But how much does it all cost? Well, unlike Love Film you can pay as you go, without signing up to monthly payment scheme. Rental prices start from 39p for a TV episode and movies start from 99p and on a buy to own basis from 89p for a TV episode and from £2.99 for movies. If you fancy streaming movies directly to your computer via Blinkbox visit www.blinkbox.com

To sign up to LoveFilm go here. To sign up to Blinkbox, go here.


Marcia Degia - Publisher

 
Marcia Degia has worked in the media industry for more than 10 years. She was previously Acting Managing Editor of Homes and Gardens magazine, Publishing Editor at Macmillan Publishers and Editor of Pride Magazine. Marcia, who has a Masters degree in Screenwriting, has also been involved in many broadcast projects. Among other things, she was the devisor of the documentary series Secret Suburbia for Living TV.