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Verizon Offers FiOS Customers 'Starz Play'
$5.95 to watch Starz movies via your PC or laptop
by Karl Bode 10:59AM Wednesday May 28 2008
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Verizon has announced that they've struck a deal with Starz Entertainment to offer FiOS customers the "Starz Play" broadband video service. The service offers users access to 1,000 films and 2,500 total "video selections," though it will cost you an additional $5.95 per month (I notice the press release omits this fact).

I've never quite understood the supposed value of such offerings, particularly if you already subscribe to premium movie channels. If you're the latter, you'll probably be more interested to note that Verizon has extended their existing relationship with Starz and will now be offering all 16 Starz channels to FiOSTV customers.

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wifi4milez
Big Russ, 1918 to 2008. Rest in Peace

join:2004-08-07
New York, NY

1 edit

Its not just at your desk

If you read the press release, you will note that FIOS subscribers who pay for this service can then access it from anywhere in the country. This means that if you are traveling you can watch Starz on your laptop (from a hotel) and not pay the hotel PPV rates if you are so inclined. The issue is that (as far as I can tell) the movies still need to download before being played (unlike the netflix "instant" playback), so I think this is a VERY limited use application. If I am at a hotel and given the option to press "play" on the TV remote or wait 1.5 hours for a "free" movie to play on my computer...well I will let you figure that one out.

EDIT: It appears that this service has a "State-of-the-art user interface with a Watch Now feature that allows viewing of a movie or video while it continues downloading in the background." So this means you would likely only need to wait a few minutes for it to buffer before playback. Still a lot more difficult than pressing "play" on a remote however!
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Have YOU thanked a soldier today? If not, think about doing it as you speak ENGLISH this memorial day. God Bless America, and God Bless our troops.

kapil
The Kapil

join:2000-04-26
Chicago, IL

Vongo

This must be the Vongo service re-branded for Verizon. Vongo is pretty good...although, if you already have Starz at home, why not get the same thing for free with a Slingbox or some such?
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»www.DumbLogic.com

Dogfather
Premium
join:2007-12-26
Laguna Hills, CA

Re: Vongo

The only reason I can see going with this over Slingbox is if you're upload is slow. But given this is a FiOS offering the slowest FiOS upload speed is 2Mb, way fast for very good quality Slingbox feeds.

With Slingbox prices coming down to where you can get them pretty cheap on sale, I don't see why a FiOS sub would go for this.

wifi4milez
Big Russ, 1918 to 2008. Rest in Peace

join:2004-08-07
New York, NY

Re: Vongo

said by Dogfather:

The only reason I can see going with this over Slingbox is if you're upload is slow. But given this is a FiOS offering the slowest FiOS upload speed is 2Mb, way fast for very good quality Slingbox feeds.

With Slingbox prices coming down to where you can get them pretty cheap on sale, I don't see why a FiOS sub would go for this.
Thats a really good point. I havent used my Slingbox in a while (since I switched from Windows Mobile to Blackberry actually), but it was a really great product. I just might hook it back up once the BB player is released!
--
Have YOU thanked a soldier today? If not, think about doing it as you speak ENGLISH this memorial day. God Bless America, and God Bless our troops.

Dogfather
Premium
join:2007-12-26
Laguna Hills, CA

Re: Vongo

Since Echostar bought Slingbox they seem to be working on a lot of new projects too.

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK
said by Dogfather:

With Slingbox prices coming down to where you can get them pretty cheap on sale, I don't see why a FiOS sub would go for this.
Coming soon! Throttling or Low caps er, I mean "Network Management" techniques to "Improve customer experience"... Meanwhile this wonderful pay service will be eexempt....
--
"Regulatory capitalism is when companies invest in lawyers, lobbyists, and politicians, instead of plant, people, and customer service." - former FCC Chairman William Kennard (A real FCC Chairman, unlike the current Corporate Spokesperson in the job!)

Dogfather
Premium
join:2007-12-26
Laguna Hills, CA

Re: Vongo

Hopefully Verizon pencil pushers won't go to the Comcast School of Customer Abuse.

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK

1 edit

Re: Vongo

said by Dogfather:

Hopefully Verizon pencil pushers won't go to the Comcast School of Customer Abuse.
I'm with you here.

Slingbox is a natural extension of networking/broadband technology. Really, so is VOD or downloading Video via the Net... But since many broadband providers are also in the "Pay for TV" business as well, the temptation is strong for them to turn to the Dark Side and start "managing" people's net connection to protect their pay-TV business..

Dogfather
Premium
join:2007-12-26
Laguna Hills, CA

Re: Vongo

I think that is was Comcast traffic shaping was all about. I don't think it has anything to do about controlling piracy. It's about normalizing traffic shaping...getting that foot in the door. Then just add more stuff to the list, that is unless Apple. Amazon and E* pay the blackmail fee.

Glaice
Brutal Video Vault
Premium
join:2002-10-01
North Babylon, NY
Mom never liked Vongo, as the number of movies was less than what Netflix has.

wifi4milez
Big Russ, 1918 to 2008. Rest in Peace

join:2004-08-07
New York, NY

Re: Vongo

said by Glaice:

Mom never liked Vongo, as the number of movies was less than what Netflix has.
Yeah Vongo totally sucked when I tried it out last year. I literally couldnt find a single movie I wanted to watch that they had available (and I checked back over the course of a month!) so I cancelled it. I dont understand what is preventing them from having a huge collection of movies to download, but until they figure it out they wont be successful.
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Have YOU thanked a soldier today? If not, think about doing it as you speak ENGLISH this memorial day. God Bless America, and God Bless our troops.
rickonline

join:2005-11-15
North Bergen, NJ

Free or $5.95?

If I understand the press release correctly, Verizon customers will get this service at no charge and Non-Verizon customers will pay $5.95. Is this correct?
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Rick
MrSpock29

join:2008-02-09
Hammonton, NJ

2 edits

Re: Free or $5.95?

said by rickonline:

If I understand the press release correctly, Verizon customers will get this service at no charge and Non-Verizon customers will pay $5.95. Is this correct?
It looks to be $5.99 for HSI and Fios subscribers. I am not sure if non-VZ subs can get it.

edit: price is 5.99, not $5.95 as stated in the editorial.

88615298
Premium
join:2004-07-28
West Tenness
said by rickonline:

If I understand the press release correctly, Verizon customers will get this service at no charge and Non-Verizon customers will pay $5.95. Is this correct?
No if you're not a Verizon customer you're out of luck. Verizon doesn't realize not everyone lives in a verizon area. The only verizon service I can get is their cell phone service and appearantly that's not good enough for them to qualify me for this.
rickonline

join:2005-11-15
North Bergen, NJ
This is the paragraph I am referring to in the press release (at no additional charge):

Verizon's broadband customers can now visit www.verizon.net/starzplay to subscribe to Starz Play. Customers can access the service anywhere in the United States to watch live Starz programming and to download and view movies and videos an unlimited number of times at no additional charge. The movies include blockbusters such as "Ratatouille," "Spider-ManTM3" and "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End."
--
Rick
MrSpock29

join:2008-02-09
Hammonton, NJ

Re: Free or $5.95?

said by rickonline:

This is the paragraph I am referring to in the press release (at no additional charge):

Verizon's broadband customers can now visit www.verizon.net/starzplay to subscribe to Starz Play. Customers can access the service anywhere in the United States to watch live Starz programming and to download and view movies and videos an unlimited number of times at no additional charge. The movies include blockbusters such as "Ratatouille," "Spider-ManTM3" and "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End."
The "no additional charge" must refer to the unlimited number of times they can be downloaded. The other part of the release clearly states in a couple of sections:
"Verizon's broadband customers can now visit www.verizon.net/starzplay to subscribe to Starz Play. ", emphasis on the word subscribe placed by me. It also does state that you must be a Fios or HSI customer, by stating "Verizon's Broadband customers...."
MrSpock29

join:2008-02-09
Hammonton, NJ

2 edits

omitting a fact?

There is a link right at the top of the story to subscribe, and it is in clear view that it is $5.99 per month.

Press releases don't necessarily get into details like pricing, and I don't see any effort by Verizon to hide the cost, so I have no problems not seeing the price in the press release.

edit: Also, it states it is for Fios and HSI subscribers, not just Fios.

blah

@195.149.147.x

Come on

Until I can access a little more movies then that you won't be getting my money.
SD6

join:2005-03-26

1 edit

Slingbox (or Netflix) replacement?

It seems to me this competes more with Netflix than Slingbox (for FIOS customers who don't subscribe to the movie package). No? And isn't $5.95/mo cheaper than Netflix?

Fountainhead
Premium
join:2003-10-25
New York, NY
kudos:1

Re: Slingbox (or Netflix) replacement?

This would be more enticing if Starz had more good movies...
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It's all part of my rock and roll fantasy

old_dawg
"I Know Noting..."

join:2001-09-22
Westminster, MD

Re: Slingbox (or Netflix) replacement?

said by Fountainhead:

This would be more enticing if Starz had more good movies...
X2, beat me to that. Starz doesn't call one of its channels
Endless Repeat ENCORE for nothing!

I dropped Starz from my DTV account months ago and if HBO doesn't come up with another blockbuster series soon, I'll
drop them as well. Netflix serves me better than any "premium" movie service.
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"Our network engineers are aware of the problem..."