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VMIX offers platform for renting movies on Facebook

Think Facebook is the next Netflix and you want to rent your movies, TV shows and videos on it just as Warner Bros is doing? Then the company to talk

By PETER WHITE

Published: 7 April, 2011

READ MORE:

Think Facebook is the next Netflix and you want to rent your movies, TV shows and videos on it just as Warner Bros is doing? Then the company to talk to is VMIX. The company has a platform called VMIX Social that lets content owners and distributors rent videos on social networking sites like Facebook, where they can be played immediately or later on a tablet, smartphone, smart TV or PC.

The six-year-old San Diego company says it’s the first to offer a turnkey solution for live and on-demand video rentals plus promotional videos on social networks.

Warner Bros added five movies to Facebook this week in addition to the one that it posted a few weeks back. Warner Bros is listed as a VMIX customer, but VMIX does not say whether it’s for VMIX Social.

Warner Bros films now available on Facebook including the Dark Knight

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets,

Inception, Life as We Know It, Yogi Bear

Renting shows on Facebook has several advantages over renting on Netflix:

- Facebook has a worldwide audience of 600 million and more users than Netflix’ 20 million who pay at least $8 per month.

- The studio/distributor is in complete control.

- No complex contract is needed upfront.

- Prices, terms and geographies can be changed when needed.

- Facebook lets shows and prices be posted however the studio or distributor sees fit.

- Movies rented on Facebook give viewers a way to immediately post their reviews.

On the other hand, there’s no up-front payment with Facebook as there would be with Netflix.

There are a couple of negative elements that come with renting movies on Facebook:

- The offer isn’t valid in all states or outside the States, at least not currently.

- To rent the movie, the user has to allow the studio to access their account just like any other app. That includes a person’s demographics, list of friends and shared information.

Content owners and distributors are faced with a number of choices when it comes to renting content online, each with their own terms and conditions:

- A third-party site such as Apple’s iTunes, Amazon on Demand, LoveFilm, Vudu, CinemaNow and others.

- A subscription service such as Netflix and Hulu Plus.

- A studio or distributor’s own Web site such as Sony’s free, ad-supported Crackle.

- A pay-TV service such as the TV Everywhere service that Time Warner Cable and others are developing.

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