Amazon rumored to join new digital media locker service with Disney, VUDU, Google Play, Apple iTunes, and others

Disney is rumored to be expanding their Disney Movies Anywhere digital locker service to include movies from other studios such as 20th Century Fox, Sony Pictures, Universal Studios, and Warner Bros. The service, which is said to be called “Movies Anywhere” and live at moviesanywhere.com, is expected to support Amazon Video, VUDU, Google Play, and Apple iTunes. If it works like the existing Disney Movies Anywhere service, it would mean that buying a movie from a participating studio through any of the major digital stores will result in the movie becoming accessible through all other video services at no additional charge.

UltraViolet is the digital locker service that has come closest to the dream of being able to buy a movie once and play it through numerous streaming stores without having to buy it again. While UltraViolet managed to get most major film studios to participated they were not able to get top streaming providers like Amazon, Google, and Apple onboard. This resulted in UltraViolet access being limited to services like VUDU and Flixster, which are not available on numerous platforms, like the Fire TV.

When Disney launched their Disney Movies Anywhere digital locker service for their own films, they had no trouble getting most major streaming providers, like Amazon, Google, and Apple to participate. This meant that buy a Disney movie through Amazon, for example, made the movie instantly accessible on Apple iTunes and all other participating digital stores at no extra charge.

Disney is now expected to rebrand the service as Movies Anywhere and allow additional film studios to join so that movies other than those produced by Disney are included in the digital locker. As previously mentioned 20th Century Fox, Sony Pictures, Universal Studios, and Warner Bros. are said to participate in the newly expanded service, joining Disney, which in turn also includes Touchstone Pictures and Hollywood Pictures.

Assuming the service works like Disney Movies Anywhere, it would mean that buying a movie produced by any of the aforementioned film studios from any of the participating digital stores will instantly unlock the movie on all other participating digital stores.

Bloomberg is reporting that the service will allow for movie downloads in addition to streaming, much like Amazon and Netflix already do. We’ll have to wait for the service to officially launch before learning more.

The above promotional image has appeared on Slickdeals and was allegedly leaked by VUDU. It suggests that customers will receive up to 5 free movies for linking their various digital store accounts. Signing up and linking one account, such as your Amazon account, would give you the movies Ghostbusters (2016) and Ice Age for free. Linking a second digital store account, such as Google Play or Apple iTunes, would give you the movies Big Hero 6, The Lego Movie, and Jason Bourne for free.

The Disney Movies Anywhere service is currently down due to “technical difficulties.” This could be an indication that Disney is making the transition to the new service right now and that it will launch very soon.

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14 comments
  1. Andy says:

    I wonder what this new service means for my Ultraviolet movie collection.

    • Andy says:

      I hope that it means my current Ultraviolet movie collection will be transferred to this service.

    • Riqui Lugo says:

      Your uv movies will stay in the up locker but if it is owned by one of the following studios such as Sony Fox Ect….. You will finally be able to watch them on iTunes google and Amazon. I currently own a Sony 4k TV. It supports all of them except for apple. So this would benefit me. I own game of thrones season 1-6 on Google movies and TV but I can’t watch it on vudu in my bedroom which does not support google. With this app I can view my uv library and my google and Amazon and my iTunes movie on my TV in the bedroom now. If the app is compatible with my Sony TV.

  2. Andrew says:

    I’d like to see Microsoft and Sony allow you to add your movies to an anywhere account. That would be great as I’ve purchased movies on the windows store through Xbox that I would love to in the same place as my vudu and google play services.

  3. Y2Bogus says:

    I think it’s good that all these services are finally coming together under one umbrella. That being said, it should have been the Ultraviolet um brella, not DMA. Disney is notoriously restrictive in all their practices, and kept the market segmented longer than it needed to be by starting its own service rather than joining the UV consortium.

    I’m hoping they continue the practice of being able to share your movies with 5 others.

    I’m sure that our UV collections will be transferred to MA, since our licenses are with the studios and not a vendor. If not, this will be a huge issue.

  4. Y2Bogus says:

    Ok, I’ve gone in and linked 3 of my 4 accounts. Vudu linking is still broken at the moment. Almost all my movies ported over. I had one Lionsgate movie in Google Play that didn’t port over. It also looks like TV shows don’t port over. I’m really hoping they expand to TV since I have a ton of TV shows divided up between amazon, Vudu, Google Play, and iTunes.

    The interface also needs a little work, like being able to sort movies.

  5. Dave says:

    So, does this mean that Amazon will offer a VUDU app for the Fire TV?

    • Y2Bogus says:

      I think it’s up for the provider, Vudu/Walmart to create the app and for Amazon to then approve it and add it to their store. That being said, sideloading the Android TV version of the Vudu app works perfectly on second gen fire tv boxes and sticks. I even get UHD on my second gen box.

      First gen fire devices only support widevine level 3 DRM so you can only get SD from them.

    • Mike M says:

      I don’t expect a Vudu app, but if the Vudu linking works as expected, the titles should become available in your Amazon library, and be playable natively on the FireTV no Vudu app required.

      • Y2Bogus says:

        Most titles. Lionsgate, MGM, and Paramount haven’t signed on yet. If you check your Vudu library, titles that will port over have the little MA logo next to the UV logo on them.

  6. George says:

    FYI from the FAQ:

    https://help.moviesanywhere.com/hc/en-us/articles/115005167603-VUDU-linking-temporarily-unavailable

    VUDU linking temporarily unavailable

    We are aware of a small issue linking with Vudu and will be resolved by 10 am Pacific Time. Please try linking to VUDU again at that time.

  7. Axecaster says:

    Is anyone else seeing conflicts with rooted devices or just general HDCP messages when trying to view movies?

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