9:01pm PT by Carolyn Giardina
Five Hollywood Studios on Board for Movies Anywhere Service
It's official. "Movies Anywhere" is launching in the U.S. with movies from Sony Pictures Entertainment; 20th Century Fox Film; Universal Pictures and Warner Bros. Entertainment; as well as The Walt Disney Studios, which includes films from Disney, Pixar, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm. It's also stepping out with the support of digital retailers Amazon Video, Google Play, iTunes and Vudu.
Movies Anywhere will allow consumers to buy movies and then store them in a "digital locker," which they can access from supported devices. The app is based on the Keychest technology that also made up the Disney Movies Anywhere service.
In recent years, Disney has offered its service while the five other major studios — Fox, Paramount, Sony, Universal and Warners — supported UltraViolet, a similarly conceived service developed by Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE) consortium, which included the aforementioned studios, sans Disney.
The new Movies Anywhere is a Disney-owned entity that will operate with input from an advisory committee made up of members from each of the participating studios.
Paramount is the last remaining major studio that is not a part of Movies Anywhere. Its general manager Karin Gilford told THR that it is in talks with Paramount and she "hopes they will join us."
If you already use the Disney Movies Anywhere service, you're in luck. According to Gilford, customers can also access their library on the new service (Disney Movies Anywhere will be phased out).
It may be more tricky for UltraViolet users. Gilford didn't comment on the future of Ultraviolet or how it might fit into the new service, only offering that UltraViolet content could be accessed, at least for now, through a Vudu account.
Movies Anywhere initially offers roughly 7,300 digital movies along with previews and extras from the studios. According to Gilford, this service for movie purchases will have new titles before they become available on other streaming platforms. Movies Anywhere now offers support for devices including Amazon Fire; Android devices and Android TV; Apple TV; Chromecast; Apple's iPhone, iPad and iPod touch; and Roku.