There’s no doubt Internet has changed the way we approach all forms of art: we can visit a museum virtually to contemplate the greatest artistic paintings; we can use the Web to listen to a wide selection of artists from any genre; we can read many of literature’s classics in our own computers; and we can even watch movies online.
Thanks to live streaming techniques we can now rent movies and watch them in an astonishing quality without leaving our PCs. Of course, there’s a price for this kind of service and a very affordable one, if you think it’s ok to not to experience the mystique of going to a theater. So, here’s a list of sites where you can get the latest of the movie world, delivered to your living room.
Many experts point Vudu as the site in which you can stream movies online in the highest of qualities, and they are certainly right. The company’s very own HDX video format makes this possible and you’ll be able to enjoy your movies in 1080p and Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound. There’s also a great variety of movies from any genre you can think of and you can rent them or purchase them without having to pay a subscription: you just pay for what you watch.
PROS: Wide movie offer. Incredible video quality. Movies are available in the same day as the DVD/Blu-Ray is released to stores.
It can be little pricey (especially when renting higher quality contents). Most of the available contents aren’t A-class movies.
In 2006, Amazon decided to release a new service that allowed users to downloaded their favorite movies. Amazon Unbox (such was the name of the service) was a failure, especially for the pretty annoying DRM protections. So, the company decided to rethink its service and that’s when Amazon Instant Video was born. The shift from downloading to streaming proved to be the right move and Amazon Instant Video turned into a platform in which you can enjoy movies and TV shows in a similar manner to VUDU: rent or purchase the titles you want and that’s all. The quality isn’t the same, and the movie offer is a little more limited but all in all is an OK service.
Availability of TV shows, especially some of the most important in the US. Special offers and season’s passes. Your purchases are stored in your Amazon account and can be later accessed from other devices.
Quality is standard HD. Limited mobile support. You won’t discover many cult movies here. Available only in the US.
This is an interesting site that combines online video rental services (movies sent to your home by post mail), resale of DVDs and Blu-Rays, videogame rentals and movies online. Although it only operates in the UK, Germany and Scandinavia, it’s a great alternative for all of the people on those countries. It should be noted that, in spite of being famous for its incredible catalog (which is, indeed, amazing), the offer of online movies is somewhat limited. However, being able to rent games and movies in one package turns this service into an option worth checking out.
An unlimited subscription can get you several benefits. Lay your hands on the latest from the gaming industry.
Most of the good stuff isn’t available online. Several of the shipped products are in pretty bad shape.
The final service of this list can be compared to Grooveshark with the difference that Voddler is devoted to movies. In this way, you’ll be able to stream free ad-supported movies or rent them through a premium membership through an hybrid peer-to-peer technology. This means that your movies online will be streamed from other users’ PCs while, at the same time, you’ll be streaming contents from your computer. Although the movie and TV show offer isn’t as big as you might expect, it’s definitely a very nice site.
Free movies, TV shows and documentaries. New streaming technique provides you with a faster access to the contents.
Limited amount of available movies. The service can be only used in Scandinavia (although it’s coming to Spain in short).
As you can see, more and more companies are starting to realize that art and Internet make a pretty profitable combination. That’s why we are seeing the launch of many platforms with entertainment purposes. Ultimately, all of us, users, benefit from the various alternatives from which we can pick the ones that better suit our needs.
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