There have been quite a number of streaming services voicing their support to promote the stability of the Internet by throttling the quality of videos or offering more content to help keep people inside longer. One name that is noticeably missing is, of course, Google Play Movies. It may not have enough users to bring the Internet down but, more importantly, it doesn’t have that much free content to entice them in the first place. That could, however, be changing soon based on clues found in Play Movies’ Android app.
Just like Play Music or perhaps even worse, Play Movies doesn’t always get the spotlight when it comes to digital content distributors. While it has relatively competitive pricing and a rich selection of titles, users who prefer it over, say Amazon Video, are significantly fewer, too. Google looks more like a passive player in this market, one that serves these content simply as something tacked on to its entire Google Play ecosystem.
XDA’s APK teardown of the Google Play Movies app, however, yielded something extremely interesting. Text suggests that the company is planning to open up not just a few but “hundreds” of titles for free. Of course, there’s a catch. Like many streaming services with free tiers, playing these videos will be interrupted with ads.
Other details are, of course, practically non-existent but it could give Play Movies a bit of an edge. By virtue of Android and the ubiquity of Gmail and Google Docs, almost everyone these days is also practically a Play Movies subscriber. All it might take is a few good free movies for the service to gather a more faithful following.
That doesn’t guarantee its success though, as can be seen in both Play Music and the odd Play Magazine and Newsstand. It’s definitely within the realm of possibility that Google will eventually sunset Play Movies in favor of another YouTube “spinoff”, provided it is able to get the same licensing agreements for distributing content there.