We've talked a lot about the deals services like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus have to go through to get their content. What if there was a way that a content provider could stream digital content right to your computer, TV or mobile device without having to go through all of these hoops? What if it was perfectly legal, too?
The answer, my friends, is Zediva. This company has developed a very interesting business model that allows them to stream brand new movies straight to you without the need to sign any deals with the movie studios. How are they accomplishing this? They are actually streaming DVDs, not files, from their servers. When you rent a movie, for $2, the DVD is taken out of inventory. Because it is not an unending supply, there seems to be nothing the studios can do about it.
To find out more about the process, hit the break.
Imagine a warehouse full of DVDs, like the Netflix warehouses. When you, the user, rent a movie, a physical disc is taken out of the inventory and placed into a DVD drive. This disc and the accompanying drive are yours for the 2 weeks that this $2 rental gives you to watch the movie. At the end of the 2 weeks, the disc is removed from the drive and placed back into inventory for someone else to rent.
Because the process is not too different from the way Blockbuster, Hollywood Video or Red Box operate, Zediva claims to be totally in the clear. While this is all well and good as a conceptual service, what about compatibility? Well, the company is working on an HTML5 compatible player so that Apple devices can play the videos on the go and they plan on working on device-specific capabilities, as well, like gaming consoles and Roku/Boxee.
So long as their legality claim holds, I would love to see this available on my Xbox. If you're interested, Zediva is offering a free trial to anyone to signs up before the end of the month. March has really turned into the month of free, huh?