Movies Anywhere sees rise in digital movie ‘mega-purchasers’

Binge TV watching bowl of popcorn
Movies Anywhere consolidates access to digital purchases from different studios. (Renato Arap/E+/Getty)

Movies Anywhere – a digital movie service run by Disney in partnership with Warner Bros., Universal and Sony Pictures – says “mega-purchasers” are on the rise.

The service, which launched three years ago, assigned the term to consumers who purchased 24 or more movies in the past 12 months and said that segment has grown 37% in the last three years. Among these mega-purchasers, average movie hours watched in-app has also grown significantly, with 94% more hours watched on average in 2020 versus 2017.

Movies Anywhere said the number of users using its service on connected TVs grew 68% over the past three years, with 104% growth in hours watched across connected TVs. Average hours watched per person on connected TVs increased 11% with Apple’s tvOS and Android TV scoring the biggest lifts.

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Digital content purchases and rentals has become an increasingly important service for consumers during the pandemic. The Digital Entertainment Group said spending was up 26% in the first six months 2020 compared to the $12 billion consumers spent in the first six months of 2019.

DEG said consumers spent more than $1.5 billion on digital entertainment transactions through electronic sellthrough (EST) and video on demand (VOD) in the second quarter of 2020, an increase of 54% over the same period a year earlier.

In August, Movies Anywhere announced that digital content purchased through DirecTV will now be accessible through its service. Apple TV, Prime Video, Vudu, Xfinity, Google Play/YouTube, Microsoft Movies & TV, FandangoNOW and Verizon Fios TV also currently support Movies Anywhere, which also handles digital codes from eligible studios’ Blu-ray and DVDs.

The app consolidates access to digital purchases from studios including Sony Pictures Entertainment, Universal Pictures (including DreamWorks and Illumination Entertainment), The Walt Disney Studios (including Disney, Pixar, Twentieth Century Studios, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm), and Warner Bros. Entertainment.