FilmFlex takes control of hmvon-demand

Cars 2 will be one of the early releases on hmvon-demand. © Disney/Pixar. All rights reserved

Movies are to be made available on the same date as their DVD release as part of a new HMV-branded movies-on-demand service, launched by the high street retailer and FilmFlex Movies.
It will take advantage of deals held by the Disney-Sony-owned FilmFlex with over 30 distributors including all of the Hollywood majors and the UK’s leading independent distributors.
hmvon-demand will initially be offered via Web/PC with content available on a rental basis for consumers to watch on or offline. However, there are plans to extend viewing to a wider range of digital devices. Download to own and cloud-based locker services are also a part of the roadmap.
FilmFlex will manage all digital rights and security on behalf of HMV. It will also be responsible for the website build and platform operation; all the content management; billing and customer service as well as on-site promotion. “Our deal with HMV illustrates perfectly the benefit of combining their well-known brand and high traffic volumes with our own expertise in technology and content,” said Jeff Henry, CEO, FilmFlex.
The initial soft launch is to the 2 million members of the purehmv rewards scheme, before the main launch activity in January 2012.
Broadband TV Views: Famous for its iconic ‘dog-and-gramophone’ trademark, HMV has struggled to maintain its place on the high street against music and video downloads from the likes of iTunes, and more recently Lovefilm. The decline of packaged media has already claimed Tower Records and the Virgin Megastore chain in the UK. With FilmFlex on board there is evidence that Netflix, the darling of conference PowerPoints, won’t have it quite so easy.