Buying downloads from Amazon

Discussion in 'Streaming and Digital Media' started by Yorkshire, Feb 21, 2014.

  1. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Okay, can anyone help me here.

    In the US you can buy a film on download from Amazon.

    In the UK you can't (I'm in the UK).

    Are there ways round this? For example, could I get a friend in the US to open an Amazon account, download the film (where I believe it will also be saved to a cloud) then watch it in the UK?

    Cheers.

    Steve W
     
  2. Joshua Clinard

    Joshua Clinard Screenwriter

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    Actually you can buy online films in the UK. You have to use go to LoveFilm.com, but it's owned by Amazon, and it's changing to Amazon branding next week.
     
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  3. Keith Plucker

    Keith Plucker Screenwriter
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    I decided to give this a try. I subscribe to a VPN service. If you aren't familiar with what this is, the important part for this discussion is that I can make myself appear to be from different geographic locations.

    In this case, the service has a London server so I used that making it appear I was in London. I then signed in to my US Amazon account. I tried a streaming video from Amazon Prime and a movie (Despicable Me 2) I had in my Amazon account. Neither worked, giving me a permissions/location error.

    So it would seem what you suggested wouldn't work. However, if you were to sign up with a VPN service that has US servers, you could flip that situation around. The VPN would allow you to appear to be from the US. However, I am guessing you would need a credit card with a US billing address. Or possibly you could buy an Amazon gift card in the UK and gift it to the US account.

    As an example, while connected to the London server, I was able to stream content using the BBC's iPlayer. The quality was very good.

    Edit: Seem's like Joshua's answer is easier. :D

    -Keith
     
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  4. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Cheers.

    BTW, you can't use Amazon UK gift cards on other Amazons.

    Steve W
     
  5. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Another couple of questions, if that's okay.

    If you download a film from Amazon - you've bought it - how does that work then? Is it like an mp3 which you can play on any device, or is it 'tied' to one or two devices?

    Also, what's the quality like? Is HD 720p or 1080p ? If I have a film on DVD but its not out on Blu-ray Disc is it worth buying a HD Amazon download, or is that not much better than the DVD?

    Cheers.

    Steve W
     
  6. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I don't know how it's going to work over there in the UK, but here in the states, you register your devices so you can watch any of your purchases or any title on your watch list. I can watch any of my titles on my iPhone, iPad, Roku and Panasonic equipment.

    The quality is fine and much better than it was 3-4 years ago. Amazon downloads in 720p, but my Roku units upconverts to 1080p. The only HD Amazon download I purchased is "Sahara", the Bogart film. I do have several films on my HD watchlist that I stream every now and then.
     
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  7. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Cheers.

    Just to clarify - I prefer to buy everything on Blu-ray Disc. I have a list of my top100 films, 85 of which are now out. At least one of the remaining 15 (Ozon's Swimming Pool) is available to buy in the US from Amazon on a HD download. It's the sort of film I could imagine waiting a long tome for a release on disc.

    I have a Panasonic all-in-one Blu-ray Disc player/amp in my lounge, and a Panasonic 3D Blu-ray Disc player in my cinema room.

    Steve W
     
  8. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Actually, I notice that 4 others from my list are available to buy in HD:

    Fail-Safe
    Seven Days in May
    Wait Until Dark
    Z

    Steve W
     
  9. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    By the way, buying downloads can be dangerous in a certain way. I bought the 1080p download of The Train from Vudu and about a week later, Twilight Time announced it was releasing it on BD. :rolleyes: Needless to say, I'll be buying it on BD too since I love this film.
     
  10. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Sorry about this - something has come up.

    Amazon's UK site isn't too clear can you clarify something.

    If I 'buy' a film, do I download it and save it at home on a HDD, or do I just buy the right to stream it forever?

    The Amazon UK site, on one page at least, says you can only download on to a Kindle Fire, but it's not clear whether this is for titles you've bought permanently, or just a way to sort of save streamed titles for later.

    Can you help?

    Cheers.

    Steve W
     
  11. Joshua Clinard

    Joshua Clinard Screenwriter

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    When you buy a title on Amazon Instant, you have it available to stream from your Amazon library forever. You can download it to watch on certain devices, or you can watch it over the internet from any device with an Amazon app. With Amazon, there are certain cases that a title can be removed for a limited time. For instance, if a title has a contract with HBO for 3 months, it can be unavailable for those months. Your not buying a file that can play outside amazon's app. It contains DRM.
     
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  12. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Screenwriter

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    Cheers.

    Useless to me. I don't have a Kindle Fire, so that effectively means that, even if I buy something, I haver to stream it.

    Broadband on my estate is 1.5Mbps on an evening (stop laughing), so that's a non-starter.

    I see in the US you can download to a PC using Amazon Unbox Media Player - that hasn't been announced for the UK yet.

    Steve W
     
  13. Joshua Clinard

    Joshua Clinard Screenwriter

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    Maybe you want to use Flixster instead. You can download to many devices, including PC's, iPads, iPhones, Android phones and tablets, and also allows playback on the flixster app on some smart TV's and blu-ray players.
     
  14. Mark-P

    Mark-P Producer

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    One should also be aware that you cannot download Amazon movies to a Mac. You can download to iPads and iPhones (in standard definition only) but not a Mac desktop computer.
     

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