Blockbuster OnDemand, the company’s streaming movie service, has signed a distribution deal with the electronics manufacturer, bringing free streaming films to basically all of the company’s Web-enabled 2009 models. The pipeline of content will open this fall.
It’s something of a one-two punch for Samsung, which already has an agreement with Netflix to stream movies through some of its Web-enabled Blu-Ray players. Blockbuster’s deal promises them “preferred positioning” on the players, though it’s unclear what that means, exactly.
Blockbuster won’t charge for the streaming service itself, but you will have to pay to rent or buy movies. With the Netflix streaming service, customer can watch unlimited films for free, if they are Netflix subscribers.
Web-enabled TVs are just beginning to roll out, but are expected to quickly take over living rooms. Virtually every manufacturer has one on display at the Consumer Electronics Show in January and several are already on the market.
They offer a variety of new options for consumers, who can now watch anything from the streaming films of Blockbuster and Netflix to the latest YouTube postings, but they also represent another threat to the television networks, by offering an easy alternative to programming.