Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Canada Gets Movies

Well, looky there.  Apple and iTunes have finally gotten around to offering movie rentals and purchases through iTunes in Canada and the UK.  Guess the studios got their heads out of their rears and decided this download thing might actually be useful.  Unfortunately, as with everything else from the big studios, it's much too late and behind the times.

I mean, look at those prices.  For starters, they're more expensive than in the States, even though the dollar is par.  Secondly, rentals are $3.99-$4.99 (which is decent), but purchases are between $14.99 and $19.99.  Are you kidding me?!  Who in their right mind would pay $19.99 for a downloaded movie with no extras?  The DVD would cost as much new, or less used, and you'd get the behind the scenes stuff and DVD extras.  Plus, I'm sure it's like the songs - you bought it, but it's coated in DRM so you can't use it where you'd like.

As far as I can see, the purchases are priced out of competitive structure, and with DRM they're worthless.  The rentals are intriguing though, and competitively priced compared to PayPerView / On Demand rentals off my Rogers box.  And if you have an AppleTV unit, you can get them up to 720P high definition, which is pretty cool.  I could see the rental aspect from a convenience point, and the rental price is actually better than Rogers (just checked - same movie is $4.99 from iTunes, $5.99 from the cable box).  I'm all for any competition that puts pressure on Rogers.  And on the rental front, Apple gives you 48 hours to watch it in Canada compared to 24 hours in the States. Maybe that's why we have to pay the extra buck.

So welcome to Canada, Apple - what took you so long?  You've got some work to do making the rental / purchase movie section of your iTunes store clearer, but at least you managed to break the online barrier in Canada.  Let's hope you can bring costs down again with the iPhone too...

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Comments on "Canada Gets Movies"


Anonymous Marina said ... (June 04, 2008 3:14 PM) : 

I'm not particularly thrilled about the purchases but the rentals are definitely something I'll be looking at. Haven't checked it out yet but I will be tonight. Hopefully, they'll offer more than just mainstream fare. I'm thinking it could be good for those hard to find arthouse films.


Blogger KEANAN BRAND said ... (June 07, 2008 1:41 AM) : 

Haven't tried yet to purchase a download, rental or otherwise.

I've browsed online, considered television episodes, thought about purchasing a film I can't find at the store, but just can't quite pull the trigger.

Maybe it's the thought of cluttering "the baby" or the idea that a rental download expires. Not sure.


Blogger The Texican said ... (June 07, 2008 7:01 AM) : 

It's me again Margaret. Still reading the "Stranger" serial. Good stuff.


Blogger Eaglewing said ... (June 08, 2008 12:45 AM) : 

Marina: Yes, the purchases are bogus, but the rentals could be good. I don't know though how much hard to find they'll have. Could be a while as they go after the mainstream first.


Blogger Eaglewing said ... (June 08, 2008 12:47 AM) : 

Keanan: Too true - don't want to clutter "the baby." I don't like the expiration date either, or the DRM, but I think online is where the future is headed for movies.


Blogger Eaglewing said ... (June 08, 2008 12:50 AM) : 

Texican: Thanks for reading. I appreciate the comments and your taking the time to go through the series. Glad you're enjoying it.


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