Amazon Unbox

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#1
Does anyone regularly use Amazon Unbox?

How do you like it? How frequently do you use it?

If you watch your purchases on a device other than a PC, what do you do to "save" your purchases? or do you just treat them like rentals?

We'll be using it for the first time tonight on our TiVo. I actually thought the download would take a long time, so I did it two nights ago, initiated on Amazon.com, and then selected the option to download it to my TiVo. Within about five minutes it automatically started downloading the content and it was completed remarkably fast (which made me suspicious). It looks like a complete recording but it is about 20% of the size of my normal TiVo recordings for that resolution. I watched the first few frames and it seemed okay. We'll see tonight how it all works out.

I'm not sure whether I'll delete it, or whether I have to worry about doing so. I'll have to read into that a bit.
 

Jason Fritz

Administrator
Staff member
#2
This is the first I've ever heard of it. According to Wiki they "rebranded it" to: "Amazon Video on Demand" in Sept. 2008...but they kept the Amazon Unbox name for their player which lets you download higher quality videos.

Do you happen to know what resolution your download is off hand?

From what I can make of it, you can purchase/download a movie or show to any PC with a flash player installed too.
 

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#3
The labeled it "[HD]". After watching the episode, I can confirm that it wasn't really HD. It seemed to me to be more like a very good 480p than a 1080i.
 

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#4
The labeled it "[HD]". After watching the episode, I can confirm that it wasn't really HD. It seemed to me to be more like a very good 480p than a 1080i.
Most of the Amazon VOD rentals are around $2.99 right? Kind of pricey for 480p if that's all the better resolution they offer. :(
 

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#5
Most of the Amazon VOD rentals are around $2.99 right? Kind of pricey for 480p if that's all the better resolution they offer. :(
$1.99 standard definition; $2.99 "high definition". They don't go into great detail about what they mean by "high definition" but the do specify explicitly how many bits you're getting: 2GB for a certain HD episode; 1GB for a certain SD episode.

Last time I checked
HD ≈ 6 * SD
not
HD = 2 * SD
 

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#6
$1.99 standard definition; $2.99 "high definition". They don't go into great detail about what they mean by "high definition" but the do specify explicitly how many bits you're getting: 2GB for a certain HD episode; 1GB for a certain SD episode.

Last time I checked
HD ≈ 6 * SD
not
HD = 2 * SD
Do you think it's worth it? Can't imagine forking over a few extra bucks every once in a while for it because I keep up with DVR recording during the regular season for shows and etc. If I miss something, I watch online or rent from Blockbuster.
 

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#7
Well, in this case, it was one episode of 24 we were missing, which we were told by fans of the series was a pivotal episode. So yes, it was worth it, and having 2 * SD for $1 more was worth it.

I wouldn't do this on a regular basis for more than $1.25 per hour, for at least the 2 * SD resolution, AND of course they would have to start providing closed captions (my wife is hearing impaired).

Blockbuster is notoriously poor when it comes to selection for television series. And Blockbuster Online/Netflix don't allow single disc rentals. So if you don't have a full month of discs you need to watch, they're pretty much useless.
 

O-O

DTVUSA Member
#8
Technology is getting pretty cool. :)

One thing that kind of befuddles me is that, the $2.99 might seem a little pricey, but things like uploading, cataloging, db storage, and then downloading to the customer all cost money. If there are a lot of people watching each episode, of course it's cost effective, but how many people does it actually take to make something like one episode available like this profitable? Do they make a profit on each episode or do they lose money until X amount of people pay and download an episode.
 

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#9
I think, for now, we have to look at things like Amazon Unbox as loss leaders. The production studio is probably making money, but the distributors are still jockeying for position.
 

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