New IMDb App Update Includes Ability to Buy Movie Tickets

The free IMDb app, currently available as iOS and Android versions, now offers U.S. users the ability to purchase movie tickets. The update follows similar offerings from other apps such as Fandango and Apple’s Siri. Users can also tap on the “Search via Amazon Mobile” button in the iPhone or iPad app to learn more about purchasing movies and TV shows on DVD or Blu-ray (requires that the Amazon Mobile app is installed). Continue reading New IMDb App Update Includes Ability to Buy Movie Tickets

Apple iTunes and Netflix Dominate the Online Video Market

Newly released statistics indicate that Apple’s iTunes and subscription service Netflix continue to lead the Internet video market. Earlier this month, we reported that Netflix held a clear lead in SVOD viewership over Hulu and Amazon for Q1. Yesterday, Apple announced that iTunes viewers are purchasing more than 800,000 TV episodes and 350,000 movies per day. Additionally, Apple announced that HBO GO and WatchESPN are now available directly on Apple TV. Continue reading Apple iTunes and Netflix Dominate the Online Video Market

Redbox Instant by Verizon App Now Available on Google TV

Google announced this week that the newly launched Redbox Instant by Verizon app is now ready for Google TV. Available in the Google Play market, owners of second generation hardware will be able to make full use of the app’s streaming capabilities (as detailed at the Google I/O conference, only newer devices have the necessary DRM support). Google Play is currently offering a one month free trial for new subscribers. Continue reading Redbox Instant by Verizon App Now Available on Google TV

Cine Gear Expo: Industry Vets Discuss 4K for Cinema and TV

Columbia Pictures’ “After Earth” was screened via a Sony 4K digital cinema projector this weekend during the Cine Gear Expo in Los Angeles. After attendees filled the 500-plus-seat Paramount Theatre on Friday, a second screening was added on Saturday. “After Earth” was among the first feature films produced using Sony’s 4K F65 camera. Sony, Canon and Red are among the major camera makers now able to support 4K. Continue reading Cine Gear Expo: Industry Vets Discuss 4K for Cinema and TV

Sony Launches 4K Bravia TVs, Other Brands Expected Soon

Since the debut of Ultra HD 4K TVs at CES in January, Sony has become the first to offer 4K televisions to consumers with its new line of screens available through its Bravia brand. The first 4K Bravia sets are 55- and 65-inch models priced in the $7,000 range, while an 84-inch unit costs as much as $25,000. As an incentive, Sony is including a set of 10 4K mastered Blu-ray movies, and plans to launch a digital download service with more content. Continue reading Sony Launches 4K Bravia TVs, Other Brands Expected Soon

Microsoft Unveils Xbox One, Emphasizes More Than Gaming

As promised, Microsoft announced its Xbox One yesterday, the successor to the Xbox 360 and the company’s eighth generation gaming console. Scheduled for release by the end of this year, the Xbox One will compete with Nintendo’s Wii U and Sony’s upcoming PlayStation 4. While the update touts plenty of power and rich features for gaming, Microsoft is emphasizing the Xbox One as a lifestyle device designed for streaming an array of entertainment media. Continue reading Microsoft Unveils Xbox One, Emphasizes More Than Gaming

Exec Credits Digital Downloads for Fox Home Video Growth

During a Q3 earnings call Wednesday, News Corp. COO Chase Carey discussed how Fox has experienced significant growth in home video due to digital downloads. Carey cited digital rentals and downloads via sites such as iTunes and Amazon as the primary contributing factor. He also suggested that in a few years “Hulu will look a bit different than it does today,” in order to compete with Netflix. Continue reading Exec Credits Digital Downloads for Fox Home Video Growth

Majority of Entertainment Hardware Not Actually Connected

In a study conducted by NPD Group with over 4,000 participants, only 47 percent of home entertainment devices, such as Blu-ray players, gaming consoles, smart TVs and streaming media devices are connected to the Internet. Results of the study also determined that 40 percent of connected televisions are used to watch Netflix content, with other video sites such as YouTube following at 17 percent, and Hulu at 11 percent. Continue reading Majority of Entertainment Hardware Not Actually Connected

Kaleidescape Launches Download Store for HD Movies

Home entertainment server maker Kaleidescape opened its own download store for HD movies this week. This new system lets users download “Blu-ray quality” versions of movies that can then be played through Kaleidescape or on the Web and through mobile devices via UltraViolet. However, there is a concern regarding the amount of data each download will consume, as each movie can average around 50GB. Continue reading Kaleidescape Launches Download Store for HD Movies

New Titles and EST Boost Home Entertainment Spending

Consumers spent approximately $4.69 billion on home entertainment purchases and rentals during Q1 2013, according to the Digital Entertainment Group. Spending rose more than five percent over the same period in 2012, due to a new slate of titles and growth of electronic sell-through (largely a result of increased access to digital content). Some credit the success of UltraViolet, which may be loosening Apple’s grip on the EST market. Continue reading New Titles and EST Boost Home Entertainment Spending

Consumer Demand for Classic Films on DVD and Blu-ray?

In an effort to boost slumping home video sales, Hollywood studios are turning to the classics. Films such as “Rebel Without a Cause” (1955), “Cleopatra” (1963) and “Funny Girl” (1968) are scheduled for rerelease on DVD and Blu-ray Disc. Amid a nearly decade-long drop in home video sales of new movies, largely due to rental options such as Netflix and VOD, demand for catalog titles has held up better. Continue reading Consumer Demand for Classic Films on DVD and Blu-ray?

Netflix Exec Says to Expect Streaming 4K in Year or Two

According to Neil Hunt, chief product officer for Netflix, the service is expecting to stream movies and television programs in 4K resolution within the next year or two. While playback of 4K, which delivers about four times the HD resolution of 1080p, requires compatible monitors (and could eat up a consumer’s monthly data cap), Netflix is preparing its proprietary Open Connect content delivery network to address issues involving larger bitrates. Continue reading Netflix Exec Says to Expect Streaming 4K in Year or Two

Howard Stringer to Step Down as Sony Chairman in June

Sir Howard Stringer, chairman and former CEO of Sony, announced that he will retire this year. It is anticipated that Stringer will formally stand down at the company’s annual shareholder meeting in June. The Welsh-born businessman served as Sony’s CEO from 2005 to 2012 and has been with the company for 15 years. Last year, he handed over the chief executive role to Kazuo Hirai, the former head of Sony’s video games unit. Continue reading Howard Stringer to Step Down as Sony Chairman in June

Stream Criterion Collection Films for Free This Weekend

Criterion announced yesterday that all of its films from the Criterion Collection are available for free streaming via Hulu through this weekend only. “The company has routinely offered up selections from its catalog — normally exclusive to paying Hulu Plus subscribers — for complimentary viewing, but now it’s opening up the floodgates and making hundreds of classic motion pictures available at no cost,” reports The Verge. Continue reading Stream Criterion Collection Films for Free This Weekend

Report: Worldwide Spending on Movies Up $1.3 Billion in 2012

Worldwide spending on watching movies last year reached $62.4 billion, up from $61.1 billion in 2011 and $60.1 billion in 2010, according to IHS Screen Digest. The numbers include theatrical releases, disc rentals, pay TV VOD and digital retail purchases and rentals. North America accounted for 41 percent of global movie revenue in 2012, although spending on physical media saw a decline. Continue reading Report: Worldwide Spending on Movies Up $1.3 Billion in 2012