The Walt Disney Company announced the launch of its MovieBeam on-demand movie rental service, allowing consumers instant access to recent DVD and video releases, as well as a wide variety of popular films from almost all of the major studios. The service will first launch in Jacksonville, Florida; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Spokane, Washington. MovieBeam has agreements in place with DreamWorks SKG, MGM Studios, Miramax Films, New Line Cinema, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Universal Studios, Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox Studios and Walt Disney Studios.
The MovieBeam receiver -- manufactured by Samsung Electronics -- is a device that automatically receives movies, stores them on its harddrive and gives consumers the opportunity to view them on-demand. MovieBeam will always offer 100 movies in full digital quality, and every week, about 10 new movies are transmitted via a digital wireless signal to the MovieBeam receiver's small indoor antenna, replacing 10 titles. The data transmissions take the form of secure data streams and are sent through the broadcast spectrum of television stations owned by ABC and National Datacast's network of PBS stations. MovieBeam will work whether or not a consumer has a cable or satellite television subscription. The service allows users to watch full trailers for all the films offered.
"MovieBeam provides a unique, new and convenient approach to watching movies at home and further demonstrates Disney's commitment to using new digital technologies to develop new businesses that deliver content direct-to-consumers, generate growth and combat the threat of piracy," said Peter E. Murphy, sevp and cso of The Walt Disney Co. "The innovative MovieBeam business model relies on existing broadcast spectrum to achieve significant bandwidth to the home with limited initial investment. MovieBeam also uses state-of-the-art technology from Samsung for this next-generation service."
"Samsung is excited to be working with a talented team from Disney to pioneer this amazing breakthrough in digital home entertainment," said Gee-Sung Choi, president of the Digital Media Network Business of Samsung Electronics. "MovieBeam represents everything Samsung is striving to accomplish as a global leader in digital convergence products. By making powerful new technologies available yet invisible to the user, MovieBeam conveniently delivers instant fun and entertainment for all who love movies. Samsung and Disney are transforming home entertainment technology as we know it."
MovieBeam requires a $6.99 per month equipment service fee and a per movie viewing fee of $3.99 for New Releases or $2.49 for Popular Favorites. This fee entitles the consumer to unlimited viewing of the title for 24 hours. There will also be a one-time activation fee of $29.99 required in certain areas. Within two days of the consumer sign-up, the MovieBeam receiver, remote control and small antenna arrive via FedEx. For more information visit www.MovieBeam.com.