Moviebeam, a Video On Demand services via local TV spectrum to OTA receiver is to show down the 2nd time. It was a failed project originally founded by Walt Disney sold for a big lost to the video rental chain Movie Gallery. The acquisition was a desperate attempt to utilize the same concept developing movie delivery system in digital platform. They paid $24 million for the acquisition cost, shelled out another 10 plus a 50 million cash infusion from investors for further implementation. All of that funding lasts about 9 months; they are informing current customer that the movie service will be out at December the 15th.
The final cease of the defunct is predictable. It was a proven technology that failed to deliver because of two major factors, price and content. The service is only available in 31 cities and customer is required to pay $250 up front for a set-top box (price been dropping to $149 lately), no monthly service charge but $2-4 for a movie, extra $1 for HD. There are 10 new movies updates per week with barely a few in HD only.
With the affordable online rental rate going these days, who’s in their right mind paying for a hardware that’s only working with one VOD system. The titles are limited, cost extra and you only get 24 hour grace period per purchase. It’s a tough service to sell considering consumer have other choices or existing service that already provided VOD movie selection but comes with national and premium networks.
Movie Gallery to Shutter Moviebeam Set-top Download Service [via digitalmediawire]