Fox Bowing Movies on Android Platform21 Jul, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel
First-time access on Google’s platform coincides with Netflix adding support to its nascent streaming app for the Android.
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment this fall will become the first major studio to offer movie downloads to Android-based smartphones and tablet mini computers packaged with a Blu-ray/DVD combo release.
Starting with the Oct. 12 foreign Blu-ray Disc/DVD combo release of X-Men: First Class, buyers will be able be able to download a digital copy compatible to the Android platform on their computer. The movie then can be “side-loaded” from the computer to a compatible smartphone.
The title will not be available with Android-compatible digital copy when it is released domestically Sept. 9., according to a studio spokesperson.
Until now, movie downloads only have been available on Windows and Apple’s iTunes Store. But Google in recent months has ratcheted up its video distribution capabilities, including bowing a subscription-based streaming rental service and acquiring DRM company Widevine.
The IDC recently projected that Android will have 40% of the smartphone market by the end of the year.
“Given its strong growth as a mobile operating system, the support for Android is an important move for us because it further enhances Blu-ray discs as the best way to get your movies to all your screens,” Vincent Marcais, SVP of marketing with 20th Century Fox International Home Entertainment, told FinancialTimes.com, which broke the story.
Fox first offered a bundled Blu-ray and DVD with a digital copy in 2009.
“The starting point for us is that people like to own a movie,” Marcais said. “We need a business model that satisfies that need and Blu-ray is the business model that satisfies that.”