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Sony debuts Hancock through HDTVs before DVD

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 14 Oct 2008 19:09 User comments (19)

Sony debuts Hancock through HDTVs before DVD Sony has followed through on its promise that it would become the first studio to premiere a major motion picture rental on a networked video hub before it premieres on physical media.
Owners of Sony BRAVIA HDTV sets with Internet Video Link will soon have the option to rent Hancock , almost a month before its stated DVD release date. The options include a 720p HD version as well as a 480p version for users with slower Internet connections.

The rentals are similar to those of iTunes in which the rental is yours for 24 hours of unlimited viewing. The price however is a totally different story. Apple and VUDU charge $6 USD for new-release 720p titles while the new Sony titles will cost $10 USD.

Interestingly, the electronics giant added that they will be sending free copies of Hancock on Blu-ray to any user who rents the movie and signs up online. Pretty good deal if there are no other catches.

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19 user comments

114.10.2008 19:39

WTF?!?!

Nice wasy to undercut your own Blu-Ray.

Well, hopefully it will available for download off the net that much sooner.

214.10.2008 19:46

Originally posted by PantherM:
Nice wasy to undercut your own Blu-Ray.
Not really since it's a 720p rental. Plus you get a free copy of the BluRay if you rent the movie and sign up online.

314.10.2008 19:51

That is nice except I dont have a Brava HDTV. See the movie one month early for $10 and get the blu-ray free later. You know that Sony has started a program where you regester you blu movies and build points for purchases on Sony Style. If this is something that they plan to do on a steady base, my next HDTV will be a Brava.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Oct 2008 @ 19:54

414.10.2008 20:48

funny its been on the net for awhile so doesnt really matter...

514.10.2008 23:36

no surprise to see Sony jacking up the price. plus don't think any one cares hand cock was a poor movie watch able but poor

615.10.2008 4:34

Quote:
plus don't think any one cares hand cock was a poor movie watch able but poor
what movie did u watch? it wasnt hancock! Some 1 ripped u off buddy!

715.10.2008 7:36

Quote:
Originally posted by PantherM:
Nice wasy to undercut your own Blu-Ray.
Not really since it's a 720p rental. Plus you get a free copy of the BluRay if you rent the movie and sign up online.
Agreed, so far downloadable movies can't compete with Blu-ray both in quality (1080p; Lossless audio) as well as content (extras).

815.10.2008 8:04

Quote:
Quote:
Originally posted by PantherM:
Nice wasy to undercut your own Blu-Ray.
Not really since it's a 720p rental. Plus you get a free copy of the BluRay if you rent the movie and sign up online.
Agreed, so far downloadable movies can't compete with Blu-ray both in quality (1080p; Lossless audio) as well as content (extras).
Too bad my TV is only 720P....

915.10.2008 12:01

I guess I haven't been paying much attention to the price of HD streaming rentals, but $6 - $10 for a flippin single rental? Is this soley due to the fact that it's preceding the DVD? How can streaming rentals compete with physical ones at that price? Even if it is an early release, sounds like a complete ripoff to me. I'd rather pay the $1 extra a month for Netflix Bluray and just wait for whenever it's available. And with my ISP rumored to cap UL/DL to 5GB/month total, the option to stream any movie is completely off the table. Same thing with the PSN Movie/TV rentals. Complete ripoff.

1015.10.2008 15:27

just stream off netflix.

but i think this is smart, streaming will soon take over. 10 bucks to stream the movie and get a free copy is a good deal. They know their blu ray format will not last long, so they want to get their share of the streaming market as well. Good strategy to leverage off their blu ray product to build their streaming branch

1115.10.2008 15:39

Originally posted by jetyi83:
just stream off netflix.

but i think this is smart, streaming will soon take over. 10 bucks to stream the movie and get a free copy is a good deal. They know their blu ray format will not last long, so they want to get their share of the streaming market as well. Good strategy to leverage off their blu ray product to build their streaming branch
Still doesn't address bandwidth caps. Streaming is a great idea in theory, but there is not enough data either way to rely on or disprove streaming as a solid business model. There needs to be at least another year of studying the effect of ISP bandwidth caps and any improvements in infrastructure. How many people in 2009 will go ahead and upgrade their service plan? And what if the majority of people decide to upgrade their service plan? Well then your in the same predicament as you are now. The bandwidth just isn't there. They are trying to create a bell curve here, where a handful who use the most will pay for it and the majority will fall to the side. But if streaming content is being marketed to the masses and everyone wants it, then there is no ground gained. People who never had any reason for high usage will suddenly be hitting the caps.

Not sure I agree about them knowing that their blu ray format won't last long. Lots of speculation there. Just as it's speculation that it will last long.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 15 Oct 2008 @ 15:41

1215.10.2008 17:41

Quote:
Still doesn't address bandwidth caps. Streaming is a great idea in theory, but there is not enough data either way to rely on or disprove streaming as a solid business model.
I do not understand this. Were do you live? I live in a small town less then 9k people in Alaska. The only way we have internet at all is though a microwave dish. We have unlimited bandwidth at $60 a month. speed is a little on the slow side. we only have 3m/512 but more then adequate for streaming videos.

The internet I get here compared to everyone I know down south is more expensive for less. So again were do you have to live to see this bandwidth problem? I have always felt that living in Alaska meant living with some of the worst internet in the US. Is this not the case? If it is not I would like to know were is worse.

1315.10.2008 19:27

bandwidth will increase whether or not streaming becomes the new medium. 4mbps is plenty enough to at least download a movie within 3-5 hours, and have it ready to view when you get home. My isp allows 8mbs which is twice the bandwidth i had 2 years ago. If your connection is slightly too slow, they can always download the entire film, or just wait to buffer. There are isp's globally that are 1gbps. bandwidth will only increase with time. Streaming is inevitable.

As far as montly caps go, those are controversial, but even if they become legally accepted, at 200 gB per month, thats still enough to watch a decent share of movies.

i live in a small town, id assume that most bigger cities can at very least connect to 10mbps for under $50 a month,

1415.10.2008 21:10

Originally posted by jetyi83:

i live in a small town, id assume that most bigger cities can at very least connect to 10mbps for under $50 a month,
Yeah here in NYC I get 16/1 for $45 and FIoS is 25/25 for $75 a month

1516.10.2008 3:01

Originally posted by jetyi83:
As far as montly caps go, those are controversial, but even if they become legally accepted, at 200 gB per month, thats still enough to watch a decent share of movies.
200Gb = 4 50Gb Blu-ray movies. That would be problematic for me as I tend to watch more than that per month.

1616.10.2008 6:17

Quote:
Quote:
Still doesn't address bandwidth caps. Streaming is a great idea in theory, but there is not enough data either way to rely on or disprove streaming as a solid business model.
I do not understand this. Were do you live? I live in a small town less then 9k people in Alaska. The only way we have internet at all is though a microwave dish. We have unlimited bandwidth at $60 a month. speed is a little on the slow side. we only have 3m/512 but more then adequate for streaming videos.

The internet I get here compared to everyone I know down south is more expensive for less. So again were do you have to live to see this bandwidth problem? I have always felt that living in Alaska meant living with some of the worst internet in the US. Is this not the case? If it is not I would like to know were is worse.
I am very jealous of DVDBack23 :P I'm hoping that FIOS comes across the border sooner than later. I live in NY just shy of Westchester and I have DSL. My ISP is Frontier (a small ISP) who just recently made headlines for suggesting that their customers will have a 5GB cap (DL and UL combined). They are going this because they can't handle the bandwidth demand. When streaming becomes more mainstream, you are going to have a much higher demand. People are going to come home after work, probably close to the same time and there is going to be a window in the evening where there will be a huge streaming demand.

Now to be fair, DSL was not made to handle such a large load at once. And I am probably the customer that they hate the most, and they probably have a red flag next to my name, ready to boot me off come January 09 (I download about 300GB/month). I switched to DSL from my cable company a couple of years ago because the service was poor. In hindsight and in light of the relatively recent Comcast scandal, I believe that I was being throttled (loss of internet service specific times of the day and no direct answer or solution to the problem). But since this was over two years ago, nobody was really aware that an ISP would do this. Their tactic worked and I switched providers (this is my theory).

Some Cable caps that people have mentioned are much better than what Frontier proposed, but it still means that I have to change providers and pay more money. I am willing to pay more money for the bandwidth I use (and to head off any comments about it - it's really nobody's business why I download that much). My point is I am not going to even think twice about paying an insane price of $6 - $10 for a single rental. Seriously, are people really that impatient that they can't wait for physical media to become available that they are willing to pay so much more? For $10, I expect to be able to keep something. Not have it ripped away in 24 hours. Heck, if I wanted that to happen, I'll go to Great Adventure every day for entertainment.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Oct 2008 @ 12:01

1716.10.2008 9:57

For the $10, you do get to keep something. You get the BD later for free. Free depends on how you look at it. Yes, $10 is too much for a download, but it is one month early and you get the BD.

My self, there is no way that I am going to sit around 3 to 4 hours waiting for this to down load while hopping that my network service does not drop out and cause the download process to start all over again.

However, if I had the Brava HDTV, I would rent it just so I could get the BD for $10. Nothing wrong with that.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Oct 2008 @ 10:02

1816.10.2008 11:58

Originally posted by glassd:
For the $10, you do get to keep something. You get the BD later for free. Free depends on how you look at it. Yes, $10 is too much for a download, but it is one month early and you get the BD.

My self, there is no way that I am going to sit around 3 to 4 hours waiting for this to down load while hopping that my network service does not drop out and cause the download process to start all over again.

However, if I had the Brava HDTV, I would rent it just so I could get the BD for $10. Nothing wrong with that.
True, and you are completely correct in terms of this promotion. My question is where this is all going in terms of across the board pricing for new release rentals? I guess it really depends on how much I like the movie. I thoroughly enjoyed Iron Man, and if I had the setup and the choice to pay $10 which would eventually get me the hard media, then I would consider it. But, like you, I would also consider the time of the download. With DSL, my max dl speed is between 360k and 400k. At that rate, a 4.5GB movie would take a couple of hours. If I was able to watch it while it was streaming, then that might cut the wait time considerably, but only if I am downloading at my max speed, which means that nobody in my household can do anything online. I already have a strict download schedule imposed on me from the wife where I can only hog the bandwidth when she shuts her laptop down for the night. If I download during those times, I limit my dl speed to half so that it doesn't affect her. Does the Bravia allow you to cap the dl speed at various levels?

This is all just my own opinion based on my own individual circumstances. For my own circumstances, I don't see streaming anything in HD as something I would buy into in the near future. And now that I've experienced HD, there is no way that I would go back to SD. I fully agree and understand that some people may find this to be great in all respects.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Oct 2008 @ 12:05

1916.10.2008 13:23

Does the Bravia allow you to cap the dl speed at various levels?

I dont know. I also dont know what will happen if you lose your connection while downloading. A lot of devices make you start all over with the download. I have DSL 1M and like you say, If everything goes perfect, I might get it in 4 to 5 hours. One of my 3 kids are always on the PC. DL at this point or in the near future does not sound like some thing that I can sit down, order and plan on enjoying without potential problems.

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