Europe's online source of news, data & analysis for professionals involved in packaged media and new delivery technologies

Disney debuts cloud-based digital movie service on Apple ecosystem

The Walt Disney Studios unveiled its cloud-based digital movie service, Disney Movies Anywhere. Buyers of its movies will be able to view them digitally on multiple Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and computers,) in a move that deepens a relationship between the two companies. iTunes becomes the premier digital movie provider for Disney Movies Anywhere offering titles from Disney, Pixar, and Marvel at home and on the move.

The service will be available in the US initially and comes as rival studios and consumer electronics groups have backed UltraViolet, an open standards cloud-based digital locker system. Disney Movies Anywhere's functionality is built upon Disney's proprietary digital rights locker, KeyChest. The Disney Movies Anywhere App is available for free from the App Store.

The debut of Disney Movies Anywhere coincides with the digital release of Disney's hit film Frozen and features the studio's library of some 420 digital titles. In addition, for a limited time, users who activate and connect their Disney Movies Anywhere account to their iTunes account will receive a free digital copy of The Incredibles.

Since 2008, Disney has included codes in select DVD and Blu-ray products redeemable for digital copies of Disney, Pixar, and Marvel films. Users can now redeem these codes through Disney Movies Anywhere, and Digital Copy titles previously redeemed in Disney Movie Rewards or via iTunes will automatically be active in both Disney Movies Anywhere and iTunes once a user logs into Disney Movies Anywhere and connects their iTunes account.

Disney and Apple built a close relationship when Steve Jobs sold Pixar to Disney in 2006 for $7.4 billion and, thus, became the company's largest shareholder and a Disney board member. Disney was the first Hollywood studio to make its TV and film titles available to download and buy on iTunes when Apple launched its online store.

The Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE) - the progenitor of the UltraViolet system, backed by 85 companies across the entertainment supply chain - does not see Disney Movies Anywhere as a competing proposition, at least publicly, but "as another important step forward for movie and TV lovers," DECE President Mitch Singer told StreamDaily. "I think the key takeaway is that every single major motion picture studio believes that consumers who like to collect our content should be able to view that content across multiple devices."

While UltraViolet, launched in October 2011, already offers account holders considerably more TV and film titles than Disney Movies Anywhere - 12,000 titles to date - the absence of a big Hollywood studio and Apple, the premier destination for digital video content delivery, is seen as an obstacle for its speedy implementation.

Story filed 02.03.14

Bookmark and Share

Article Comments

comments powered by Disqus