Year in CE
Curt Marvis, co-founder and CEO of CinemaNow, said that since he started his movie download service in 1999, he has seen Hollywood become less paranoid about digital content. He predicted that this year, many media companies will begin to free up their content and make it available through various distribution channels. Some of this, he said, has already begun, as evidenced by numerous media partnerships announced, such as Google/CBS, Microsoft/MTV and Intel's Viiv platform, to name a few.
Michael Arrieta, senior vice president, Sony Pictures digital sales and marketing, spoke from the content providers role, representing Sony-MGM Pictures and Sony-BMG music. While recognizing that Sony also has its own content provider options—Movielink and Connect Music Store,—Arrieta said that Sony and others need to make the content legitimately available to third parties and present the consumer with even more 'stores' in the market. Arrieta also noted the interoperability between devices. "It needs to be as easy to do digital distribution as it is to put a DVD in a device [for consumers]," he said. Finally, Arrieta contended prices for consumers must be realistic, not a price that Hollywood wants.
Marvis added that because every consumer is different and no one option has yet proven to be the best, CinemaNow is trying to be versatile, offering various means to access content: subscription, rental, pay-per-view and download-to-own. He also added that the studios are getting used to this and are willing to offer their content in new ways, testing the waters to see how they can be profitable while giving consumers more flexibility.