Disney Movies Online, the family entertainment company’s digital movie locker service, announced it is closing on December 31.
Members could buy or rent movies from the Disney and Pixar library, and then stream them to watch on their computers – but only on their computers. The service was incompatible with game consoles and OTT boxes like Boxee or Roku, and movies could not be downloaded.
Disney released a statement acknowledging the service was not successful: “Disney Movies Online does not have the flexibility that many users today demand. We made a business decision to close the service until we are able to provide the greatest value and experience to our customers.”
It’s unlikely that Disney will join the UltraViolet corsortium, the cloud service designed to encourage movie ownership in preference to rental and whose participants include all of the other major Hollywood studios. Disney intends to continue developing its own cloud service using its proprietary KeyChest technology.
Existing Disney Movies Online customers can request a refund for movie purchases. Many of the streamed movies on Disney Movies Online were acquired by entering the “Magic Code” included with Disney Combo pack sell-through DVDs, and those digital copies can be transferred for PC viewing using either iTunes or Windows Media Player.
Disney Movies Online – http://www.disneymoviesonline
Disney Movies Online – closure notice
Los Angeles Times – Disney to close its online movie service
Associated Press – Disney to shutter online movie store, website