So Google is pitching a YouTube pay-per-view service to Hollywood studios that would enable video rentals for five bucks a pop. That’s not… so bad, I guess. I mean, if you’re not already a Netflix convert. But we’ll go over that in a second.
YouTube’s pay-per-view is, in fact, not new. Yeah, I was surprised, too. Open since January of this year, YouTube’s rental service has offered video rentals from indie and niche publishers from $1.99 – $3.99. That is nothing if not rad, but so far, no one’s really biting. With only 1500 views in its first weekend (featuring Sundance festival titles), and only 6200 after the release of several Oscar-calibur films, YouTube’s rental store isn’t exactly living up to its reputation as otherwise the #1 video content provider on planet earth.
Maybe $5 rentals of Hollywood’s latest blockbusters would finally give the service some action. But would it really? $5 isn’t not a substantial amount of money to watch a YouTube stream. I guess if you’re a HUGE movie buff, it might be a more sensible option than NetFlix, which only offers so much content for your money. But if you’re a HUGE movie buff, you’re probably getting your movies for free from the Pirate Bay anyway.
I know I am.
And this isn’t even considering the fact that, ironically, you can stream most movies from YouTube itself already, if you know where to look. Google, maybe it’s best if you just sit this one out.