Amazon Exploring Movie Downloads
By George Anderson
A report in The New York Times, says Amazon.com is in negotiations with Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios and Warner Brothers to offer a movie and television show download service that would allow consumers to burn their own DVDs.
If the deal is consummated, Amazon.com would put itself in direct competition with Apple’s iTunes. Jeff Bezos and company, as has been previously reported (see RetailWire
2/17/06, Amazon Looks to Take Bite out of Apple’s Music Biz), are also working on a music download service as well as a proprietary Amazon.com MP3 player.
The studios are providing backing for a number of on-demand content services, but none offer the option of allowing consumers to burn their own DVDs.
Amazon may have an advantage, according to the Times, because of its ownership of imdb.com (Internet Movie Database). The web site contains extensive information on movies and is often found through online searches using Google and other services. According to comScore Media Metrix, imdb.com was the most-visited movie web site February 2005 and February 2006.
Moderator’s Comment: What do you see as the market potential for movie and television program download services and
how will that impact the current rental and sales market? What merchants/services do you think are best positioned to take advantage of downloads? –
George Anderson – Moderator