In a hit for Hollywood, Amazon buys into UltraViolet

A big win for Hollywood, as Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) Tuesday said it was working with an unnamed studio to implement the UltraViolet digital content locker. Rumors that Amazon would become the first major retailer to work with UltraViolet surfaced in December.

The sudden popularity of its Kindle Fire tablet moved Amazon to the front burner for studios, which see the tablet as an opportunity for them to solidify their efforts to maximize return on content by both making it both more available to consumers to watch on multiple devices while keeping their digital rights safe.

On Tuesday, Amazon's EVP for Digital Media, Bill Carr, said Amazon was "very excited about the additional possibilities from a customer's point of view that UV enables."

"The best movie and TV service for consumers is the one that provides them with the broadest choice possible," Carr said.

Having Amazon's bulk behind it could prompt other competitors, Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), in particular, into the UltraViolet fold.

Most of the major studios already have bought into UltraViolet, and retailers like Wal-mart and Barnes & Noble also are on board.

A number of companies have been reluctant to join. Apple and Disney, for example, have balked, and those are two major players the rest of Hollywood really can't do without.

Part of the problem is that the two reportedly are working on their own competing technology, KeyChest. Part of the problem is that UltraViolet has been a dud with consumers, many of whom were frustrated and confused.

The service has attracted 750,000 households since it was introduced in October, the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, the consortium backing the platform, Tuesday said.

For more:
- see this Bloomberg article

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Related articles:
Hollywood sees Amazon as leverage for UltraViolet, but it's too late for this holiday season
Vudu-to-Go lets users download movies to watch offline
Will UltraViolet be a hit with consumers? Analysts have big concerns

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