Apple launch movies in the cloud

This could really shake up the industry. I believe people don’t have a problem paying for media content if its done in a way that is user friendly. The film industry should learn from the music industry’s failure and support alternative revenue streams. The horse has bolted in terms of music, paying full price for a cd now seems such a ludicrous thing to do. Lets hope the film industry instead of supporting ruthless legislation that kills the internet, find a way to make things work. with that in mind heres an interesting piece from the LA TIMES by Ben Fritz

Apple Inc. is putting movies in the cloud, providing a boost to Hollywood film studios’ small but growing digital business.

Movies purchased through Apple’s iTunes Store from five studios — Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Walt Disney Studios, Warner Bros. and Lionsgate — will be accessible via the technology giant’s iCloud service from any of its devices, including the Apple TV, iPad and iPhone.

Apple announced its plans, which have been in the works since last year, at a Tuesday news conference, where the company also unveiled new versions of the iPad and Apple TV, an Internet-connected device that displays the movies and TV shows from iTunes and other services on televisions.

20th Century Fox and Universal Pictures are not part of the iCloud movies launch. That’s because of restrictions in their distribution deals with pay cable channel HBO, said people close to the situation not authorized to speak publicly because of the privacy of negotiations. But both studios are negotiating with HBO and expect to add their films to iCloud soon, those sources added.

In addition to new purchases, the iCloud service will store any movies that users have already bought from iTunes. Previously, Apple customers had to store movies they bought on the hard drive of their computer or other device.

The news is significant for Hollywood because Apple accounts for approximately 75% of all movies bought online, according to one person involved in the digital distribution business but not authorized to share the data. However, the percentage of iTunes movie transactions that are purchased has fallen in the last year, that person said, from nearly 50% to about 33% — the rest being movie rentals.

Studios are eager to reverse that trend because movie purchases, which typically cost between $15 and $20, are significantly more profitable than rentals for $4 to $5.

Another potential boost to digital movie sales comes from the new version of Apple TV. While the previous Apple TV only allowed movie rentals because it did not have a large hard drive for storage, consumers will be able to buy films on the new version that are stored in the cloud.

Movies in iCloud will likely prove a formidable competitor to UltraViolet, the digital movie technology backed by every Hollywood studio, save Disney, and most major electronics manufacturers, except Apple. Backers have been aggressively trying to grow UltraViolet since it launched last October and expect a big boost next week when Wal-Mart will announce it is supporting the technology in stores and online.

However, the studios apparently concluded that their top priority was growing the digital movie business with Apple on board, rather than only supporting UltraViolet.

Not a good launch then…

So during the last week Apple released Final Cut Pro X and its pretty safe to say it did not go down so well. In what appears to be a move away from their base of professional editors towards the consumer market, it has abandoned a lot of the pro features which are needed in a broadcast environment. When I watched the video introduction on the apple website, my jaw hit the floor, they have totally re-imagined how editing is to be done and not in a good way. Editors are now faced with learning a new system or just switching over to Avid or Premier Pro, which both adhere to how NLE have traditional worked.

To get a sense of the reaction check out the comments on the bottom of this NY Times review. One of the leading lights in the FCP Training profession wrote this well reasoned response to the NYTimes article

I’m sure Apple will sort it out with future releases and I’ll probably have no choice but to learn it but it’s been a long time since Apple have had such an emphatic negative reaction to one of its products.

The debate about how much of a disaster it is even made it onto Conan last night. This is a furore over a piece of editing software remember…