Amazon Ready To Unbox Video Streaming For Digital Movies


Jeff Bezos leaked a little nugget of news during an interview on stage at the D conference this morning: Amazon is getting ready to release a pay-per-view streaming service for movies. Buried in Eric Savitz’s notes from the interview:

Next topic: music and video downloads. Bezos says he is “very serious” about the business; he says it is in some ways harder because there are so many participants. It has a glamor element, that attracts people; he says they are working on for-pay streaming service that will be unveiled in a few weeks; will start instantly, a la carte for pay. (Hey, actual news!)

Bezos didn’t get into many more details, and Walt Mossberg, who was doing the interview, didn’t ask him (Planning a review, Walt?). But it would make sense to add streaming as an option to Amazon’s existing pay-per-download Unbox service. As we noted last March, Unbox has not been doing so well and Amazon sent out a survey to users to try to figure out what was missing. In our informal poll, free video streaming with ads scored as the most sought-after feature. Paid video streaming was No. 7, out of ten options. Here’s a snapshot of that poll as of this morning (you can still vote on it if you go to that previous post):


Is instant-on video streaming going to make that much of a difference, or is there something else keeping Unbox unloved?