We all knew this was in the works. The future of media is on demand / digital, and not HD DVD or Blu-Ray. Everyone knows this to be true. And now Netflix has officially announced they will be offering Internet Movies On-Demand. No, this isn’t a lame movie download service like the ones you’ve seen in the past. This is something that will revolutize the way you watch movies.
After two years of development, Netflix’s Watch Now service will launch with over 1,000 movies and television titles, which they say is about the same amount it debuted it’s DVD-by-mail service in 1999. Remember the days of those plastic disc? Remember the days when you had to buy or rent a physical thing to play movies or music?
The company is being very smart. They are offering the service to it’s subscribers for no additional fee. The average subscription of $17.99 a month will now receive 18 hours of online movies a month in addition to their three DVD’s out at once plan.
Disney is holding out, but most of the major studios are on board. I wonder if the Disney thing has anything to do with Steve Jobs and iTunes? Nah!
Subscribers must download a browser applet (which they claim will take about one-minute with a cable connection). They claim that after clicking on a title to watch, the movie will begin playing in under 20 seconds. Users will be able to pause, rewind and fast-forward. No lengthy download times.
But what about the picture and sound quality? Well it will of course vary depending on the Internet connection. Netflix claims that near-DVD quality can be partaken with a 3MB-per-second connection.
Now all we need is a set-top box, and Netflix will destroy blockbuster. But unfortunately, it won’t happen any time soon. The companies plan to integrate such a device into Tivo’s has been put on hold. I wonder why?
So unless you have a Media Center PC, it might take a while for this to catch on. One must wonder if the new Apple TV product will integrate with this service. I’m guessing not since it would conflict with the motives of the Apple owned iTunes Movie Store.
But I think that big deal coming out of this announcement is On demand movie rentals with a subscription model. That’s the true wave of the future.