Samsung launches a beta of its movie download service

In Germany and the UK today, consumer electronics company Samsung launched the Samsung Movies beta on its mobile portal. The dedicated movie download shop lets users rent or download Hollywood movies and TV shows on their PCs and Windows Media Player-equipped Samsung handset. The only device that supports the beta service is the S8300 Tocco Ultra.

Windows Media Player version 11 is required to watch downloaded content on the PC and sync with the mobile device. An active Internet connection is also required to receive the license key that makes the content viewable. Rentals can sit unopened indefinitely, but once the key is retrieved, the file is only usable for 24 hours.

Rentals cost between £2.49 and £3.99, and downloads cost between £7.99 and £13.99. Transactions require a ClickandBuy account, and each movie file consumes about 1.5 GB of space.

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Currently, there are around 500 titles available for consumption, and that total is expected to double before Q1 is over, and double again by the end of June. Samsung has reportedly said that the service will expand to portable media devices and connected TVs.

Samsung's latest connected HDTVs offer on-screen widgets through a service called Infolink, and will offer [email protected]V-Content Service in the Spring. This built-in service will access JavaScript and XML-based apps on screen, promising a more sophisticated experience.

Fellow DLNA member Sony already offers on-demand movie downloads directly to its Bravia TVs through Bravia Internet Link, so today's launch looks like the groundwork for a similar service from Samsung.

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