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Summary:

YouTube just announced on its blog that users will be able to rent movies from the site starting this Friday, but don’t hold your breath for streaming The Hangover anytime soon: The initial offering will consist of just five independent movies featured at this and last […]

YouTube just announced on its blog that users will be able to rent movies from the site starting this Friday, but don’t hold your breath for streaming The Hangover anytime soon: The initial offering will consist of just five independent movies featured at this and last year’s Sundance Film Festival. The movies, which include the 2009 Sundance Audience Winner The Cove, will cost $3.99 a pop and are available until the end of Sundance on January 31st.

Google has been playing with the idea of movie and TV show rentals for a while. In fact, Google Video initially featured an option to rent movie downloads, but the offer was quickly scrapped after it failed to take off. Reports about renewed efforts to jump on the VOD bandwagon surfaced last fall when the Wall Street Journal wrote about talks with Lion’s Gate, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Warner Bros..

It’s unclear when more high-profile partners will become part of the offering, but Google has announced that it aims to gradually open up rentals to other partners, including content providers focusing on “health and education”, and that these content providers will be able to decide the duration, pricing and local availability of their rentals.

  1. IMHO, in the near future, online pay-per-view will be applied only for special events, not for renting individual movies.

    Meaning, this offering lacks appeal, because for $4 more you can become a Netflix member and choose from 10,000+ DVDs to be delivered by mail — and (at no additional cost) stream a growing list of quality VoD content (TV shows, documentaries and movies).

    Flexible subscription offerings, easy-to-use adaptive playlist creation and personalized content recommendations are the video entertainment business model benchmark for the 21st Century.

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  2. [...] un eventuale sbarco di Hollywood sul Tubo non è ancora dato sapere nulla, e GoogleTube si limita a confermare di voler aprire gradualmente la sua funzionalità di videonoleggio ad altri fornitori di contenuti [...]

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  3. [...] revenues might not come just from advertising in 2010; yesterday, the site dipped its toes into the movie rental business by partnering with the Sundance Film Festival to offer five independent movies featured at the [...]

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  4. it is interesting to hear this news. very good plan to rent you tube movies, this business will result in great success

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  5. [...] returns from the video site’s new movie rental service. Last week, the online video site teamed up with the Sundance Film Festival to make a small selection of critically acclaimed full-length films available for rent for 48 [...]

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  6. [...] reports that the agreement between YouTube and Sundance to offer streaming rentals of some recent Sundance faves seems to have been a “failure,” as the five available [...]

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  7. [...] Expands Video Rental Program Last month, YouTube rolled out a new rental service that allowed users to rent independent films from the Sundance film festival. But now, despite weak [...]

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  8. [...] children’s programming. But as Read Write Web points out, the independent films with which the rental program first launched still dominate the [...]

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