Amazon & Studios Flirt with 48 Hour Rentals

Dave Zatz —  January 7, 2010


A few weeks back, I noticed Amazon was offering select movie rentalss with a new 48 hour viewing window. Currently, The Hangover (above, Warner Bros) and Angels & Demons (Sony) list 48 hour viewing periods, while Star Trek (Paramount) and State of Play (Universal) are limited to the traditional 24 hours. Which rubs many, such as myself, the wrong way. At the very least I’d like to see a more liberal 36 hours of viewing, enabling folks to watch or resume a movie the following day with a little bit of wiggle room. I’ve waited to post until I could get a little more insight on the situation… Is Amazon taking on the expense, as Vudu may have done with their 99 cent second day rentals, or are the studios opening up? I discussed the matter with Dave Allred of Sezmi yesterday, who confirms the studios are indeed opening up and experimenting more in this space. Amen for progress. As I’m betting most would prefer not swipe content and appreciate more favorable (and certainly reasonable) movie rental terms. Can 48 hour Apple iTunes rentals be far behind? (Thanks for the reminder, Scott!)

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5 responses to Amazon & Studios Flirt with 48 Hour Rentals

  1. All I’d really like is the 24 hours PLUS the duration of a movie. So, if I start a 2-hour movie at 7pm on Tuesday, I should be able to finish it at 9pm the next day. Even better would be to add some “wiggle room” by rounding up to 10pm or 12pm.

  2. This should have been there since rentals started online.

  3. I have little doubt that studios are ‘experimenting’ w/o asking for more money.

    Similarly to how most music singles went up from $.99 to $1.29 after DRM go removed on iTunes, I’d expect rental prices to go up with this.

  4. I got burned buy Comcast ONCE, with 20 minutes left until the end on the movie. I never rented a streaming video from anyone every again. They all make Blockbuster look good, and that’s no easy task.

  5. Why on Earth did this 24hr window start in the first place?

    Are they afraid people are going to rent out the living room and charge friends to come over and watch the move a day or two later? LOL! Free popcorn!