Rumor: Apple and Comcast in talks to stream first run movies to paying subscribers

Rumor: Apple and Comcast in talks to stream first run movies to paying subscribers
The latest rumor circulating near the popcorn stand at your local theater (where a box of Jujubes and a Coke will cost you $50) is that Apple and Comcast are teaming up to offer a service that would allow both firms to stream first run movies to customers. And by first run, we mean that these are films that are still playing in theaters. Apple and Comcast are said to be in talks with major Hollywood studios about this plan.

According to the speculation, movies that would qualify for first run streaming would be those that have already been in theaters for two weeks. And while this might not be such a great deal for the theaters, talks are currently centered on finding a way to steer some of the revenue received from selling a premium service, to the theaters that would be affected. Studios like Universal (which is owned by Comcast) and Warner are high on the idea and after all, they have the final say on whether Apple and Comcast can offer it. Of the major studios, all but Disney are looking to come up with something new to make up for revenue that streaming services like Netflix are taking from DVD sales. That is because Disney plans to offer its own Netflix style app in 2019.

The streaming service that Apple and Comcast are discussing is called premium video on demand (PVOD), and is expected to cost $30 to $50 per movie. And while the final say belongs to the studios, at least one analyst doesn't believe that PVOD will go anywhere without the theaters' consent. Michael Pachter, who hangs his hat at Wedbush Securities, says he doubts that the studios will agree to digital rentals without some kind of agreement with the exhibitors. The analyst says, "They always claim they’re going to do something dramatic, and then they don’t." The difference this time is that Universal is surely going to agree to this since it is owned by Comcast. And while Apple doesn't own a movie studio, it does own a huge pile of cash. Apple also has been linked to Disney in the past, and since Disney's largest stockholder is the Steven P. Jobs trust (yes, THAT Steven P. Jobs), the tech titan might be able to persuade the powers that be in Burbank to help get PVOD done.

source: Bloomberg

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10 Comments

1. tedkord

Posts: 17133; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

$30-50 per movie? I can't see that taking off.

3. Subie

Posts: 2296; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

For a single viewer - you're right. It would be a deal though if you had at least 4-5 people watching it in your home theater with you.

7. tedkord

Posts: 17133; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Either way, I just don't see it being huge.

6. Finalflash

Posts: 4062; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

This is likely another planet of the apps moment for Apple. Partnering with one of the most hated and evil corporations ever just goes to show how far they've fallen.

2. rnagic

Posts: 215; Member since: Jul 13, 2014

That's kind of lame. The movie theater atmosphere is so much better than sitting at home, especially when you are at an older renovated movie theater on a release day screening. Hopefully they don't kill the movie theaters.

5. jeroome86

Posts: 2314; Member since: Apr 12, 2012

Ouch. This will drive pirating more.

8. DETROIT50

Posts: 9; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

30 TO 50 DOLLARS. ARE YOU NUTS. I CAN WATCH THEM FOR FREE ON THE INTERNET THE SAME DAY THEY COME OUT NOW,

10. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

A topical Android lover...keep it up.

9. xfire99

Posts: 1205; Member since: Mar 14, 2012

Why not? Faster leaks to piratesites. ;)

11. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

Reinventing Cinema....the others cannot follow.

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