Cord Cutters News recently asked, “What was your first streaming player?” And, as one might expect, quite a few “civilians” replied with Roku devices. But all sorts of digital video products and services pre-date the very first Netflix streamer and it’s fascinating to reflect upon the various technological and corporate arcs.
For example, one of the early movie download solutions was Moviebeam, a joint venture of Disney and Cisco. You’d purchase the 160GB set-top and then rent movies for a few bucks… that streamed down over an antenna, of all things. The device was a commercial flop, which is why you’ve likely never heard of it, but notable to see Disney dabbling in this space all the way back in 2006.
Although, as much as things have changed. Many have not. 15 years later, release windows are still a thing. You can purchase a digital copy of Frozen 2 today from a MoviesAnywhere partner, another Disney business, but my daughter is likely stuck waiting until June to stream Frozen 2 on Disney+. ‾\_(ツ)_/‾