AfterDawn: Tech news

Google to start selling videos

Written by Petteri Pyyny (Google+) @ 07 Jan 2006 1:31 User comments (11)

Google to start selling videos During the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Google made an announcement that it will soon launch a service called Google Video Store that will feature prime-time TV shows from CBS, basketball matches from NBA, music videos from Sony BMG and more.
Move puts Google in direct competition with Apple, who launched its expansion of iTunes to include videos back in October, 2005. Apple's main partner has been ABC, whose shows like Lost and Desperate Housewives, have proved that an on-demand TV show service (even though its main output device is iPod) can be a commercial success.

Content from CBS will contain titles like CSI, Survivor and Amazing Race. NBA will offer current season's games 24 hours after they finish and will also offer some "outstanding performances from the past" via Google's service.

However, Google might have made one big mistake with its service, as it stated that prices of shows are determined by each content provider individually and that there's no minimum or maximum limit for pricing. Many analysts have agreed that part of Apple's success has been fixed pricing, where each song, album and TV show cost the same (videos cost $1.99 via iTunes) and knowing how the content industry works like, it sounds very likely that at first, the pricing will be low, but once people get used to the idea of buying TV shows, the prices for most popular shows will skyrocket.

From technical point, Google didn't mention what codec or resolution they will use for the videos. All videos have to be played with Google's own video player and obviously they will have strong DRM associated with files. Google also failed to address what type of restrictions DRM scheme will put on files -- again, I'm afraid that if its left to content owners to decide what restrictions each video will have, we're soon in a situation where consumers have to pay their content over and over and over again, depending what devices they are using.

But hey, Google's mantra has been "do no evil", so maybe they can implant this thinking to media industry as well -- somehow I just doubt it..

Source: Google press release

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11 user comments

17.1.2006 6:43
MrToast
Inactive

This is the way of the future, but I dont like the way all these companies "lock" the files... I mean, what is the difference in using a VCR or just downloading the Tv show, or using Tivo? I tape like 15 shows a week and watch them but for the ones I cannot watch I download but never save them. I would buy some of the shows on Itunes but a lot, you just cant find. Also, in nearly every public library you can "check out" music CD's for free so what is the difference between that and downloading? I know someone is going to say that the library has to buy the CD first but then so does the original person in order for it to show up on the net... I only download what I can buy or readily find, and buy the things I would listen to or watch even twice. What the hell is so wrong with these big companies? Is it so wrong to download? Is it so Evil? If you follow your 10-80-10 rule then I guess maybe... if these people would just listen to what we want and then give it to us!!! I think we need another tea party... (usa users, sorry brits;)

27.1.2006 6:46
MrToast
Inactive

This is the way of the future, but I dont like the way all these companies "lock" the files... I mean, what is the difference in using a VCR or just downloading the Tv show, or using Tivo? I tape like 15 shows a week and watch them but for the ones I cannot watch I download but never save them. I would buy some of the shows on Itunes but a lot, you just cant find. Also, in nearly every public library you can "check out" music CD's for free so what is the difference between that and downloading? I know someone is going to say that the library has to buy the CD first but then so does the original person in order for it to show up on the net... I only download what I cant buy or readily find, and buy the things I would listen to or watch even twice. What the hell is so wrong with these big companies? Is it so wrong to download? Is it so Evil? If you follow your 10-80-10 rule then I guess maybe... if these people would just listen to what we want and then give it to us!!! I think we need another tea party... (usa users, sorry brits;)

37.1.2006 6:49
MrToast
Inactive

Sorry for the double...er tripple post...

47.1.2006 23:54

We need to force the movie, music and game industries to sit down and decide on ONE, repeat, ONE form of DRM, or to allow anyone to create software applications with support for these DRM-schemes, without paying them time and time again. I would go for Microsoft's DRM scheme. So far, it hasn't been broken, unlike Fairplay and others, so it would be the best solution to a problem that does exist. How many of the things that are on the internet illegally were at one time legally bought? Almost everything. How many of them had DRM on them when they were bought legally? Almost NONE. How many things that DO have DRM on them, show up illegally on the internet, if the DRM is up to snuff (cough.... Windows DRM)? Answer: None. People keep on saying that DRM only hurts the people buying software illegally, because it never stops thieves who crack the DRM. Hello, most of the DRM schemes that have been cracked were PISS-POOR to begin with (CSS on DVD's). Once we get to the point where DRM is encryption keys with BILLIONS of potential keys, the problem will go away.

58.1.2006 3:55

I seriously disagree with the assertion that variable pricing is in any way a "mistake." I read quite a bit and the assertion that many analysts "agree" the Apple's success has has to do with "price fixing" is not true. Apples success has to do with existing brand name, boasted by a highly branded in-demand hardware device. Varable pricing for video content is obvious. A first run "blockbuster" film close to the time of release vs a ten year old 25 minute 4:3 Imax are extremely different values. As far as paying for content over and over, the idea that this is bad for consumers in video content is a misapplication of behavior models from audio/music content. I have quite a few dvds by hook or by crook. I have to say 95% of them I watched once and wold never watch again. Let's take netflix. average gross from the consuemr is $2 per disk. of that the post office and envelope producers get over half. netflix for labor and profit to their shareholders gets more than a quarter. I would be the content owners are getting $0.50 or less. If a system arose in two or three years where my cost was that $0.50 to the content owner and say for 4g $0.10 to my broadband provider, I would pay less. Moreover I would get my 4gb of dvd quality 2 hours of material over broadband at near realtime or at the most 2-4 hours of download -- which seriously trumps waiting 5 days for netflix or driving to the blockbuster for a possible disappointment. I just dont get this hue and cry over the alledged downside of per view paying. I would not watch king kong more than once. Of options now of paying $20 to own it,, $4 to rent it instantly at the blockbuster for one viewing, or $1.25 to $2.50 from netflix where I have to wait a few days for one viewing, vs. paying $0.50 to $1.50 with some DRM scheme and seeing it sintantly I would choose the latter. One can still buy toy story outright if your kids are going to watch it 20 times

69.1.2006 3:40
mikey_ray
Inactive

i think everything should be a fixed price---no matter what content-----but seperate but genre like sports 5dollars movies 5dollars music videos $1.50 music $1.00 a song tv shows 1/2 hour long $2.00 tv shows 1 hour long $3.00 that way all the people actors included --can all have the same rate----it will work--so no price gauging

79.1.2006 10:30

Maybe I'll just contunie to download the files...illegally. (laughs). I have a plan!!!!!!! Or not...

89.1.2006 10:33
vudoo
Inactive

OK Chris1000 about Windows DRM video and audio being cracked? Well ha ha ha without getting Afterdawn in trouble think screen recorder programs that record sound as well. Hell you don't need to crack the DRM. Think outside the box. Sure your thinking loss or degrade, but think of it this way, Its still digital. Now for DRMed Music!!! ha ha ha. I can think of two very good sound card driver capture programs that can convert to Mp3. DRM is just a ploy for the content providers to think that they have something over us users. But in fact if you have any computer knowledge and can google you can find the answer. Especially if you have friends in the underground scene. Hell even in the Yahoo chat rooms if you can swallow your pride and get into some of the good singles chat rooms and find an interesting person of the opposite sex they'll give you these programs for FREE. Oh and need I mention p2p software and the search option? Well these DRM cracking programs are there too. Yes I pay for Imesh an also use FREE p2p for my favorite albums. Why? Because you can't find all the full albums for Progressive Rock groups and pure Alternative bands like you could on the paid services like Imesh. Do I cry about the DRM? No I laugh and use T*n*b*t* to at fast speed record the DRMed files to an Mp3 file. And yes I have a 60 Gig iPod with thousands of Mp3 files and video as I have the video iPod. DRM is a laughing matter and you are all silly to think it stops anyone. Hell maybe a 19 to 23 yr old Woman at first, but once she has some nice guys to become her friend in the chat rooms she'll be cracking DRM like a pro. Case closed.

910.1.2006 14:26
diabolos
Inactive

WikiPedia (WMV HD):

Quote:
The DRM on WMV HD can be stripped using Sidda and/or DRMCreep or drmdbg or drm2wmv. You can find more information at Doom9's Forum.
----LATER---- The Google Video service is accessable at the url http://video.google.com It is still in beta testing though you can still download and buy videos! The pay videos look ok. Some of the free amature stuff is pretty funny also. The videos have a .GVI file extension. GSpot identified the .gvi files as DivX 4 (open Divx) video streams with Mp3 audio streams. Ced
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 10 Jan 2006 @ 16:00

1012.1.2006 20:00

I would pay for it if it were great quality which it won't be. Anyone here buy a video off Itunes? It's a ripoff. They designed it for the Ipod so if you watch it on your pc monitor full screen it looks like crap. I couldn't even jerk off to the Jessica Simpson "These Boots Are Made for Walking" music video it looked so bad.

1113.1.2006 9:08

Actually, now that I think about it. I would only pay for video downloads if they were it that rat format that can be converted back into dvd. otherwise, hell no!

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