Movies, TV-shows for rent – what’s the hold-up??

We bought the Xbox 360 in 2005. We’ve had Windows Media Center ever since we got our first Vista-computer in early 2007. I’ve had my ipod touch since 2007 and Apple have also launched their Apple TV, but I haven’t got one yet for reasons which will become apparent when you read this.

All these platforms and devices have a few things in common; they are able to play movies and TV-shows from your local collection, but also by way of download or live streaming from the internet!

But alas, so far there isn’t a real offering in Europe, as far as I know, or in Norway in particular, which is where I happen to live. If I want to watch a movie on my ipod, I’m forced to go the “unlawful” route of ripping and converting my DVD’s to ipod-format. Which I don’t mind, except it requires a lot of effort on my part, and I just don’t buy DVD’s anymore.. Don’t even get me started on TV-shows.

I keep reading about all the great services available in the US, like Xbox Marketplace (soon to be replaced/enhanced by Zune Marketplace Pressrelease), Netflix, Apple’s movie and TV-show rentals, Roku and so forth and so on..

I’ve found one service offering movie rentals and live TV shows over on and while I applaud the effort and move towards this model of content distribution, I haven’t really gotten this particular service to work. It’s unstable, it’s relying on available bandwidth for live streaming (ie no pre-download)and it’s payment model requires me to get out a credit card every time I want to purchase content.

So what’s the hold-up?? Why can’t we have the same services on the Xbox or Windows Media Center in Norway as what is available in the US? Why is music so different? Why haven’t Apple, which otherwise do a great job of offering global (ie Western) services, managed to put up movie and TV content for streaming or download, with or (preferrably) without DRM?

I get that launching such a service globally is a much bigger deal than “just” launching in the US, and that a domestic US launch yields the most payback for the least amount of effort, but come on!

It’s 2009! MS, Apple – get on the ball! 🙂


Thank you. 🙂


Statistics Norway

SSB is the norwegian governmental body for all things of a statistical nature. They put together all kinds of interesting statistics on different aspects of the Norwegian society. We recently found that they’ve made a great publication in English. Great if you want to learn more from a highly trustworthy source. SSB simply says:

This is Norway