Canadian Exhibitor Bundles Movie Admission and Home Video

Canadian movie exhibitor Cineplex launched its SuperTicket service this summer that bundles admission to a theater screening with a digital copy of the same film, delivered electronically months later. The package costs more than twice as much as a ticket to see the movie in a theater. The company experimented with SuperTicket deals for three films: “The Smurfs 2,” “Pacific Rim,” and “Kick-Ass 2.” While the approach could be a remedy for declining DVD sales, it remains unclear whether fans will pay in advance for a digital copy. Continue reading Canadian Exhibitor Bundles Movie Admission and Home Video

Neo3Do: New Android Tablet Offers Glasses-Free 3D Experience

Some consumers enjoy 3D, but don’t care much for the required glasses. The Neo3Do tablet offers users the 3D experience without the spectacles. The $349 Android tablet plays 3D videos and also converts standard video into 3D. However, the 3D effect is spotty, according to this review, and sometimes works well and other times far less so. In a demo featuring a clip from the Blu-ray 3D version of “Predator,” the 3D feature was highly impressive. It also worked well with games such as “Fruit Ninja.” Continue reading Neo3Do: New Android Tablet Offers Glasses-Free 3D Experience

Netflix Makes Super HD and 3D Options Available to All Users

Netflix is starting to provide all of its subscribers with access to Super HD and 3D content. The company announced that it is no longer obligatory for a subscriber to have Open Connect to access higher bitrate HD streams, as well as 3D titles. Netflix may face challenges convincing ISPs to adapt Open Connect; issues related to peering and local content caching are not completely resolved. Netflix also plans to unveil Ultra HD, with four times the screen resolution of HD, in 2014. Continue reading Netflix Makes Super HD and 3D Options Available to All Users

Target Ticket: Online Video Service with the Family in Mind

Target launched its online video store to the public yesterday, designed to provide parents with family-friendly options for their children. The Target Ticket online storefront goes beyond the standard age-based ratings of other electronic sell-through services by enabling parents to create subaccounts for their children based on various criteria. Target Ticket currently has 30,000 movies and TV shows (for viewers of all ages) available to purchase or rent, download or stream. Continue reading Target Ticket: Online Video Service with the Family in Mind

Nielsen Study: More Viewers are Accessing Streaming Services

According to a recent Nielsen survey, an increasing number of American consumers are turning to Internet-based streaming video services. The research indicates that 38 percent of those surveyed use Netflix, 18 percent use Hulu and 13 percent use Amazon Instant Video. These numbers all represent increases over the previous year. Additionally, binge-viewing is on the rise, with 88 percent of Netflix users and 70 percent of Hulu Plus users saying they watched three or more episodes of a TV show in a single day. Continue reading Nielsen Study: More Viewers are Accessing Streaming Services

3D Conversion: PFW Provides New Depth for ‘The Wizard of Oz’

“The Wizard of Oz,” originally released by MGM in 1939, will make its 3D debut in celebration of the film’s 75th anniversary. Prime Focus World developed a stereo conversion process to convert the classic film into modern 3D, while honoring the original, now part of the classic Warner Bros. library. The process, which took 14 months to complete and involved 1,300 staffers, was especially challenging due to the amount of detail in the original. The 3D version will have a run in IMAX theaters and be made available on Blu-ray next month. Continue reading 3D Conversion: PFW Provides New Depth for ‘The Wizard of Oz’

IFA 2013: No 4K Format War Expected with Next-Gen Blu-ray

According to the Blu-ray Disc Association, the announcement of a next-generation Blu-ray Disc compatible with Ultra HD is imminent, putting to rest concerns of a potential 4K format war. During the IFA conference in Berlin, Marty Gordon, VP for Alliances & Communications at Philips and spokesman for the BDA, said that an announcement regarding an enhanced Blu-ray format involving a traditional-looking disc is expected in the near future. Continue reading IFA 2013: No 4K Format War Expected with Next-Gen Blu-ray

Sony Betting on 4K with Video Download Service and New TVs

Sony announced on Wednesday a new 4K video download service called Video Unlimited 4K, along with the unveiling of two new 4K television models. The announcements are part of a larger 4K Ultra HD initiative from Sony. While the service will initially be available only in the U.S., and challenges may result from the limited number of film and TV titles and the large file size of 4K videos, Sony has plans to expand its offerings and sees a strong future in 4K. Continue reading Sony Betting on 4K with Video Download Service and New TVs

Amazon Updates Kindle E-Reader Line with New Paperwhite

Amazon unveiled its latest Kindle e-reader this week, an updated Paperwhite with improved front-screen lighting, greater contrast, more responsive touch panel and faster processor. Software updates will include integration of book recommendation site Goodreads, which the company purchased earlier this year. The new device is available for preorder for $119 — or $139 without ads — and will ship later this month. The $189 3G version will be released on November 5th. The online retailer also announced a program for buying discounted e-books. Continue reading Amazon Updates Kindle E-Reader Line with New Paperwhite

EXCLUSIVE: Looking Beyond Summer Box Office as Trends Emerge

With Labor Day the traditional end of summer, pundits survey the uneven landscape of a fickle summer. Disappointing openings and steep weekend-to-weekend drop-offs jarred execs and provided fodder for commentary and soul-searching. It may be easy to find irony in the titles of two financially successful movies — the low-budget “The Purge” and “This Is The End,” which spoofed the end of the world against a backdrop of contemporary Hollywood — to suggest that this summer truly marks the end for movies. But that would only happen if there were a total failure to recognize emerging trends, acknowledge this is not the first time Hollywood has faced a changing market and apply new ideas to shape the future. Continue reading EXCLUSIVE: Looking Beyond Summer Box Office as Trends Emerge

Fandango to Acquire Hollywood Movie Money in Quantum Deal

Online movie ticket service Fandango has entered an agreement to purchase Quantum Loyalty Solutions, a competitor that runs the popular Hollywood Movie Money gift certificate system. Studios often use Hollywood Movie Money to promote DVD and Blu-ray releases with tickets to theatrical releases. Fandango, which has been working on its own voucher system, generates revenue by processing online ticket sales and selling advertising on its site. Continue reading Fandango to Acquire Hollywood Movie Money in Quantum Deal

Startups Use Spy Cameras and Audio Tech to Stop Film Piracy

Two San Diego startups, Verance Corporation and PirateEye, have developed technologies to prevent and reduce media piracy. PirateEye uses cameras in theaters to scan for illegal recording, while Verance uses an audio watermark to determine if a video on a Blu-ray player is legitimate, and gives purchase options if the disc being played is a pirated version. Both Verance and PirateEye have received funding from film studios for their projects. Continue reading Startups Use Spy Cameras and Audio Tech to Stop Film Piracy

Blu-ray, Electronic Sell Through and VOD Having Solid Year

Revenue from digital platforms are up 24 percent for the first six months of 2013, as an increasing number of consumers are turning to online options for entertainment. While overall disc sales, including DVD and Blu-ray, declined 4.7 percent for the same period, revenue generated from Blu-ray discs are up 15 percent. According to the Digital Entertainment Group, consumer spending on home entertainment grew more than 2 percent to $8.6 billion. Continue reading Blu-ray, Electronic Sell Through and VOD Having Solid Year

Sony and Panasonic Join Forces on Optical Discs and OLED

Sony and Panasonic announced yesterday an agreement to team up on developing standards for a next-generation optical disc that can hold more than 300 gigabytes of data (six times the capacity of Blu-ray discs). The companies are hoping to develop the new storage medium by 2015. Once fierce rivals, the two electronics leaders also recently unveiled plans to work together on mass production technology for organic light-emitting diode displays. Continue reading Sony and Panasonic Join Forces on Optical Discs and OLED

Google Approaches Media Companies with Streaming TV Pitch

Google is reportedly joining the growing number of technology companies looking to launch online versions of pay TV. According to sources familiar with the matter, Google has been talking with media companies about licensing content for a new streaming Internet TV service. We reported earlier that Intel and Sony are working on similar projects. Apple has also been pitching television licensing deals to media firms in recent years. Continue reading Google Approaches Media Companies with Streaming TV Pitch