& cplSiteName &

Cablevision VOD Gets Physical

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
2/4/2008
50%
50%

Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) is in the DVD distribution business, in a roundabout way. (See Cablevision Bows DVD Service.)

Putting a new twist on the so-called "day-and-date" concept, the New York-based MSO has teamed with Popcorn Home Entertainment on a service that allows cable customers to watch films via video-on-demand (VOD) the same day they are released in stores on DVD, so long as they also agree to pay for the physical DVD, as well.

Under the arrangement, Popcorn Home Entertainment will send the physical DVD directly to customers after they order the move from Cablevision's VOD service. The DVD will be delivered "within days" of the original order on VOD, according to Popcorn.

At the start, some titles that apply for the DVD-VOD combo include Universal Studio Home Entertainment flicks such as The Born Ultimatum, The Kingdom, Eastern Promises, and American Gangster, which becomes available February 19.

According to the site, Elizabeth: The Golden Age, starring Cate Blanchett and Geoffrey Rush, is slated to become available tomorrow (February 5).

Customers who want immediate VOD access and the physical DVD copy will pay a premium. New releases marketed by Cablevision and Popcorn will sell for $19.95 each, plus shipping and handling. Older, "library" titles will go for $9.95 and $15.95. By comparison, Cablevision rents new VOD titles (including some in hi-def format, and without the DVD element) for $4.95 each.

The cable partnership, the first for Popcorn, marks the latest effort by the cable industry to tighten VOD windows. Popcorn said it will offer titles to consumers 30 to 45 days prior to the traditional VOD distribution window.

Following a soft launch that started several weeks ago, the DVD-VOD service is available to Cablevision's base of 2.6 million iO: Interactive Optimum digital video subscribers, according to an MSO spokesman. He would not say how the service performed in the ramp-up to Monday's official launch.

To gain access to the Popcorn/DVD offer, Cablevision customers must first complete a secure profile on the Web, and provide their credit card, shipping and billing information. Customers will then gain access to titles available through the Popcorn deal via the Cablevision on-demand menu or directly on channel 500.

The new DVD-VOD service marks "a major step forward in giving our customers new ways to quickly and easily purchase goods and services from a wide variety of companies, using our fiber optic network and the advanced set-top box that is already in the home," said Cablevision EVP of digital marketing & commerce Patricia Gottesman, in a statement.

More cable deals could be in the works for Popcorn Home Entertainment, which is helmed by Steve Brenner, the former president and CEO of In Demand LLC , the pay-per-view/VOD joint venture of Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), and Cox Communications Inc. . Before that, Brenner was president of USA Networks. Company officials were not immediately available Monday for further comment about its cable strategy, or how it divides revenues with cable operator and studio partners.

Cable has shown a keen interest in tightening distribution windows in order to push VOD usage and revenues.

Comcast, for example, has been testing a day-and-date VOD service in Denver and Pittsburgh. The MSO launched a similar offering in Atlanta last October, according to a company spokesman.

Comcast has not released specific usage figures from its day-and-date tests, but the MSO has maintained that they have not cannibalized DVD sales. At The Cable Show last year, Comcast COO Steve Burke suggested that consumers would be willing to spend as much as $50 to watch movies at home in the theater release window. (See Cable's Day & Date Champion and Box Office Tizzy .)

In 2006, Comcast and Cablevision began offering films from IFC Entertainment via VOD the same day they are released in independent movie theaters.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News



(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading is spending much of this year digging into the details of how automation technology will impact the comms market, but let's take a moment to also look at how automation is set to overturn the current world order by the middle of the century.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue London
November 10, 2017, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
November 16, 2017, ExCel Centre, London
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
The Revolution Will Be Automated
Steve Saunders, CEO and founder, Light Reading, 10/10/2017
The Big Cable DAA Update
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 10/11/2017
Is US Lurching Back to Monopoly Status?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
Telecom Italia Covers 73% of Italy With NB-IoT
Iain Morris, News Editor, 10/13/2017
DT: Brutal Automation Is Only Way to Succeed
Iain Morris, News Editor, 10/10/2017
Animals with Phones
Hunt & Peck Click Here
Giving new meaning to hunt-and-peck typing!
Latest Comment
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed