Netflix inks new streaming deal with ABC

By on December 8, 2010 at 11:41 AM.

Netflix inks new streaming deal with ABC

Netflix announced a new deal Wednesday that will bring additional content from ABC, ABC Family and the Disney Channel to the company’s online streaming catalog. “Watch Instantly” allows Netflix’s DVDs-by-mail subscribers to stream an unlimited amount of television and movie content to computers and compatible set-top boxes, and now the service is also available as a stand-alone offering for $7.99 per month. New shows that will now be available on Watch Instantly 15 days after their initial air date include “Grey’s Anatomy,”  “Desperate Housewives” and “Brothers & Sisters.” The deal also brings complete seasons of popular shows like “Lost,” “Ugly Betty” and “Scrubs” to Watch Instantly.

“TV content streamed from Netflix has proven to be immensely popular with our members,” Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said in a statement. “Adding to our existing Disney-ABC lineup with great network and cable shows, and opening up ABC Family for the first time, are important steps in creating a wide and diverse selection of content Netflix members of all ages can watch.”

The move with Disney-ABC is the latest in a series of deals Netflix has put together in an effort to bolster the new content available in its streaming catalog. Hit the break for the full press release. More →

6 Comments

Amazon.com working on streaming service to combat Netflix

By on December 6, 2010 at 11:10 PM.

Amazon.com working on streaming service to combat Netflix

According to an unconfirmed report in The Wall Street Journal Monday, Amazon.com is in the early stages of developing a subscription streaming service that will compete with Netflix’s “Watch Instantly.” Citing anonymous sources, WSJ reports that the service will look to undercut Netflix’s offering, though no other points of differentiation were mentioned.

Amazon.com Inc. is developing a Netflix-like subscription service that would offer TV shows and movies, according to people familiar with the matter. That service would be included as a bundle with its Amazon Prime shipping service, which costs $79 a year, those people said.

Amazon Prime gives members free two-day shipping on all Amazon.com orders. It also offers overnight shipping for $3.99 per item. Lumping in streaming movies and TV shows for free with this unrelated service would be a peculiar move at best, though it would mirror Netflix’s original strategy, in a way. Though the company recently launched a streaming-only plan for $7.99 per month, Netflix first introduced Watch Instantly as a free add-on for its DVDs-by-mail service. At $79 per year, Amazon.com’s service would be $17 less expensive per year than Netflix’s least expensive streaming package. More →

7 Comments

Netflix to stream more first-run movies thanks to deal with FilmDistrict

By on December 1, 2010 at 11:58 PM.

Netflix to stream more first-run movies thanks to deal with FilmDistrict

Netflix announced a new deal Wednesday that will bring much needed additional first-run theatrical films to its streaming video service in 2011. Netflix has inked several deals over the past year that will help address the number one complaint surrounding its popular Watch Instantly service — there aren’t enough new movies — and now the company adds one more. Beginning next year, FilmDistrict will license movies to Netflix during the “pay TV window,” or the period of time when the films would have normally appeared on premium cable TV channels. The first two movies to hit Watch Instantly as a result of the new deal will be Drive, starring Ryan Gosling and Carey Mulligan, and Lockout, starring Guy Pearce and Maggie Grace. Both films are set to be released early next year. More →

14 Comments

Microsoft in talks to launch streaming TV service

By on November 29, 2010 at 10:23 AM.

Microsoft in talks to launch streaming TV service

According to a new report from Reuters, Microsoft recently held meetings with several networks to discuss licensing television content for a new Web-based subscription TV service. According to the unconfirmed report, the new service would provide streaming television content to owners of Microsoft’s Xbox 360 console, among other devices. Microsoft looks to be intrigued by Apple’s success with the recently redesigned Apple TV, which has been very successful in recent months. Apple was reportedly trying to bring networks on board with a subscription service ahead of its revamped Apple TV launch, but those talks were unsuccessful. Microsoft seems to think it has something to bring to the table that Apple doesn’t, and with almost 46 million Xbox 360 consoles currently in the hands of consumers, we think Microsoft is probably right. More →

8 Comments

SlingPlayer Mobile for iPad now available

By on November 24, 2010 at 11:43 AM.

SlingPlayer Mobile for iPad now available

Sling Media’s popular placeshifting app is now available on the Apple iPad. The company first announced the eventual arrival of its iPad offering back in March of this year, and the task was apparently a steep one. Almost eight months later, however, SlingPlayer Mobile for iPad is finally here. Owners of Apple’s iPad can now stream live television and movies from their homes to the iPad over Wi-Fi or 3G. Content recorded on a TiVo or DVR can be streamed as well, and SlingPlayer is capable of remotely controlling a wide variety of cable and satellite boxes. The sizable 9.7-inch display on the iPad makes it a perfect candidate for the app, and early reports from users are definitely complimentary. SlingPlayer Mobile for iPad is available immediately in Apple’s App Store for $29.99.

[Via Dave Zatz] More →

8 Comments

Hulu Plus exits private beta; now available to all

By on November 4, 2010 at 3:18 PM.

Hulu Plus exits private beta; now available to all

Hulu Plus, a premium Web-based video streaming service, is now available to the public. Rob Wong, product director for Hulu Plus, made the announcement Thursday on the company’s blog, saying the service is now available without need for an invitation. Hulu provides a service that allows users to stream movies and TV episodes for free to computers. Hulu Plus, which costs $9.99 each month (for the time being, at least), offers enhancements such as additional content and the ability to stream to more devices like Apple’s iPhone and the Sony PlayStation 3. Rumors suggest interest in Hulu Plus has been minimal though, thanks to widely available free content as well as subscription competition like Netflix’s Watch Instantly. Hulu claims to have had a successful closed beta period, however, and it will continue to expand the service to more devices during the current open preview period.

[Via ReadWriteWeb] More →

23 Comments

Redbox is ready to think outside the box; streaming service launches next year

By on October 29, 2010 at 9:00 PM.

Redbox is ready to think outside the box; streaming service launches next year

On an earnings call Thursday, Coinstar CEO Paul Davis confirmed that subsidiary Redbox would soon expand its portfolio to include a streaming product. Redbox currently owns and operates DVD movie rental kiosks situated in and around highly trafficked partner stores across the country. These unmanned kiosks allow customers to rent DVDs at low prices using an automated vending system. Customers are then charged for each day they keep the DVDs until they are returned. In an effort to compete further with rival Netflix, which now offers a popular streaming service called Watch Instantly, Redbox will introduce a Web-based streaming service some time next year. Though the service is expected to provide unlimited streaming for a fixed monthly price, Davis wouldn’t commit when asked whether the company would offer an all-you-can-eat model or an a la carte option similar to Apple’s iTunes model. Redbox’s kiosks played a major role in toppling the once-dominant Blockbuster, and it is likely safe to assume it will attack the streaming market just as aggressively. More →

32 Comments

Hulu Plus gets official: $9.99 per month, supports iOS, TVs, Blu-ray players, and more

By on June 29, 2010 at 2:36 PM.

Hulu Plus gets official: $9.99 per month, supports iOS, TVs, Blu-ray players, and more

hulu-plus

Announced earlier today after months of speculation, Hulu Plus has finally become official. For $9.99 per month, subscribers will be able to watch their favorite shows — including those from seasons past — on a multitude of internet-connected devices. Mobile devices are a go, with iOS devices including the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPad, and iPod touch (3rd generation) being the main attraction at this point in time. The best part as far as mobile is concerned is that streaming will work on both Wi-Fi and 3G networks. Several internet-connected HDTVs and Blu-ray players from Samsung already have support for the streaming service, and later on in the year, both Sony and Vizio will introduce support in some of their sets ad Blu-ray players. The PlayStation 3 will support the service “soon”, while the Xbox 360 will play nice come 2011. Hulu Plus will officially launch is July, but if you’re lucky you might just be able snag a preview invite. More →

23 Comments