Monday, July 19, 2021

Movies Anywhere

Let me get this out of the way: I'm a huge fan of Movies Anywhere.

There. I said it. You can stop reading now, because that's the ending. Or you can read on and find out why. Unless, of course, you use Movies Anywhere. Then you already know all about it, and are probably a fan, too.

Here's the background of Movies Anywhere. It started out as Disney Movies Anywhere. It was a free service of Disney that allowed you to purchase Disney movies and watch them on any platform. For example, you could by Cinderella from iTunes and it would also be in your Amazon library. Or, you could purchase Sleeping Beauty from Amazon, and you could watch it on Google Play. You get the idea. You no longer had to purchase a movie multiple times to watch it on multiple platforms.

Around four years ago, they rebranded, and expanded. It's not just Disney movies. More studios have joined in, and the list now includes:

  • Sony Pictures Entertainment
  • Universal Pictures (including DreamWorks and Illumination Entertainment)
  • The Walt Disney Studios (including Disney, Pixar, Twentieth Century Studios, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm)
  • Warner Bros. Entertainment

That's not every studio, to be sure, and key players such as Paramount are not participating. Still, it's a pretty impressive lineup. Of the over 1,600 movies -- downloads and rips of DVDs -- I have in Plex, over 800 are in Movies Anywhere. Considering I have about 300 DVD only movies ripped, that bumps the percentage up to over 60%. That's not bad.

It's cool that I can buy a movie from Google Play and watch it on iTunes/Apple TV or Amazon Prime Video. Or on any of the supported platforms:

  • iTunes
  • Amazon Prime Video
  • Vudu
  • Google Play/YouTube
  • Microsoft
  • FandangoNOW
  • Xfinity (for Xfinity TV subscribers only)
  • Verizon Fios TV (for Verizon Fios TV subscribers only)
  • DIRECTV (for DIRECTV subscribers only)

But what I like even better is the savings in buying movies. Consider this. A particular movie may be on sale on Amazon, but not on other platforms. Or Vudu may be running a special on a group of movies that are full price on other platforms. Many of the movies in my library were purchased when they were put on sale. That meant I always paid best price for the movies. Keep in mind the service is free. You do have to link your various accounts, of course, but that's it.

When it started, I only used iTunes, Amazon Prime Video, and Vudu. I hadn't purchased movies from Google, Microsoft, or any of the other platforms. However, it was free to connect them to my accounts (if I had one) or to create an account for the platform (if I didn't have one). And yes, I have purchased from all of the ones I use. I'm not an Xfinity TV subscriber, Verizon Fios subscriber, nor a DirecTV subscriber. But, I have accounts with the other services, and they are linked to Movies Anywhere.

They've also introduced something called Screen Pass:

Screen Pass is a new, innovative feature from Movies Anywhere that lets you share your love for movies with someone. Screen Pass allows you to send a pass to another movie lover that allows them to watch a Screen Pass-eligible movie for a limited time at no additional cost.

That sounds like something many people might like. I haven't used it, but I can see its appeal. And perhaps if you aren't a Movies Anywhere user, you see the appeal it has for me. Maybe it will appeal to you, too. I find it makes my Streaming Life much cheaper and easier.

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