Amazon has finally jumped head first into the video-on-demand pool after standing on the edge and dipping its toe in for what seemed like ever. The monstrous, global eRetailer have gone into the deep end and are swimming for gold. This will be another subscription-based service as opposed to its already long-standing on-demand rental service. The question is, who is going to greet them with a towel?
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Amazon has been doing a song and dance for the likes of NBC Universal (who doesn't really need them as they've got Hulu right?) and cable giants, Time-Warner and Viacom among others.They're looking to take backlogs and full bodies of work and turn them into digitally deliverable content for the online-video-consuming masses.
That could place their service in direct competition with Apple's iTV, which we're awaiting an announcement on today as well. Apple TV is said to be ready to offer 99 cent episodes of shows from various providers like Disney, FOX and ABC via iTunes. But more on that later, when I actually find the announcement.
Other players in the field include of course Google and YouTube, NetFlix which does mostly film, Sony who is doing music and probably will do video soon and of course, Apple's iTunes.
Just what we need, further fragmentation of our online video supply. Now we'll all need a half dozen online accounts just to get the content that we want. Wouldn't it be nice if there was just a one-stop shop for all your online video, TV and film, consuming needs? A non-device-centric service that allowed you to share your content across all your devices and watch it whenever and wherever you wanted? Pffft….fat chance of that ever happening it seems.
I certainly would be totally down with that. But no, everyone needs to dip their hand into the pot and so, there's now so many hands that consumers are simply not going to know which to give money to. Perhaps it's only going to work toward turning people who are ready to pay for content online into avid cable-based video-0n-demand users. Then at least you've just got one bill to pay at the end of the month. They just have to get themselves sorted and offer everything they can and make it available in multiple ways. Like I said…it's just going to be all hands and no help.
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