MovieBeam at RadioShack, Too Little Too Late?

October 28, 2006

MovieBeamIt appears as if Disney’s fledging MovieBeam; video-on-demand service is about to get a much needed shot in the arm, by way of increased retail presence. Starting Monday the MovieBeam hardware will be available at an additional 1,700 RadioShack locations, in addition to the 3k+ retail stores already offering the VOD service.

MovieBeam; for those unfamiliar with the service uses capacity rented from public television stations in 29 U.S. cities, the movies are streamed to the hard drive of a proprietary set-top box with rental prices ranging from $1.99 to $4.99. MovieBeam currently offers films from Fox, Lionsgate, New Line, Paramount, Universal, Disney and Warner Brothers. Sony Pictures is noticeably absent from the services offerings, however that may change in the coming months if the service can gain a stronger foot-hold with consumers.

That ‘stronger foot-hold’ may prove to be a challenge as VOD is already available to millions of consumers by way of cable and satellite subscriptions. In my estimation consumers would need to see some added benefit or killer-app for the service to really take off, while MovieBeam does indeed offer movies in high definition so do the majority of cable and satellite systems in service.

If MovieBeam really wanted to offer the consumer something unique; I think we’re talking about day and date theatrical releases, however considering the service itself is mainly funded by the very studios that would provide that content, I’d be surprised to see this happen. Then again, the theater owners might be surprised right along with the rest of us.

Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Media Servers