Editor ©RapidTVNews | 27-09-2011

In what could be a hugely important development for multiscreen video, movies-on-demand service provider FilmFlex has added offline has added a download to rent option for Film4oD.

FilmFlex, a joint venture between Sony Pictures Television and The Walt Disney Company EMEA, claims to be the UK’s leading on-demand movie service provider. It already manages the VOD movie service on Virgin Media since 2005, with over 65,000,000 buys to date and has content deals with over 30 movie suppliers including all the Hollywood Studios.

For its part, Film4oD, the online on demand streaming film service launched in November 2010 and with more than 50,000 registered users, claims to offer more new releases in the UK than rivals such as iTunes, LOVEFiLM or Blinkbox. The development is the latest in a series of recent on demand launches by Film4oD’s parent Channel 4, the UK’s fourth largest broadcaster.

The new download to rent will offer films from between £0.99 to £3.99 beginning with Attack The Block and Arthur available to watch the same day as they are released on DVD. The new download to rent, which saves the movie to the users’ computer, has been developed to suit users either with low bandwidth or those that would like to watch a film when not connected to the internet. The new functionality also allows users to begin watching their selection while the film is being downloaded.

All movie rentals offer unlimited viewing for up to 48 hours following the first play and each film has a rental period of up to 30 days. All movies are protected by approved digital rights management technologies and the service is geo-blocked to the UK.

Commented Julia Wrigley, Head of Film4 Channel: “Video on demand continues to soar in popularity with viewers enjoying the freedom to watch their preferred content on their own terms. We’re excited to extend our relationship with FilmFlex to offer ‘download to rent’, further strengthening the viewer experience alongside the Film4oD online streaming and Film4 channel.”