Amazon To Sell DVDs Of TV Episodes, But Will Anyone Buy?

from the another-stab-at-it dept

Content distributors have launched several experiments looking for new ways to sell media. The latest announcement is from Amazon, as they plan to sell DVDs of TV shows very soon after they air. This would offer an alternative to iTunes’ growing store of shows available for download, which aren’t easily playable on a TV and are much lower quality. What may make the Amazon offering enticing, at least to publishers, is their ability to offer a one-day turnaround on DVD production. Typically, producing DVDs entails some risk, as publishers don’t want to make a lot of extras. This is actually one of the excuses that movie studios give for the long release windows on DVDs, that they need to gauge how popular a movie is before they know how many DVDs to print, and how much to spend on marketing them. Of course, just because it may work out well for publishers, doesn’t mean it will fly with consumers. The market for DVDs of TV shows is in box sets of complete seasons — well-produced stuff that can go in someone’s collection. There may not be much of a market for single-episode DVDs with fast production and few extras.

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Comments on “Amazon To Sell DVDs Of TV Episodes, But Will Anyone Buy?”

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rwwise says:

Cost is the selling point

If I missed a particular show and could get it shipped to me for a low price. Say less then 3.00 including shipping. I would probably go for it if I was really vested in the show. Amazon could make its money back on advertising at the beginning of the disc.

I mean come on how much would it cost to ship with a netflix like envelope 50 cents? And the cost of the CD 10 cents? Cost to modify the content 15 cents. Cost to produce the CD 5 cents (Remember the bulk and automation) Cost of the Content 1.00$ R&D cost over the first 10 million discs 50 cents. So amazon just made 70 cents without counting advertising. And the profits go up after they recoup the R&D costs.

Sounds good to me.

SuckerPunch-tm says:

Here is what TV should do

Run the show on TV, like usual.

The very next day, they should make the previous nights episode available online.

For free you get: a streamed version, with unskippable commercials at the beginning and right before the end of the episode.

For a small fee, you get the episode streamed for free with NO commercials.

For a slightly larger fee, you get a downloadable episode, able to save it however you want. It will come with commercials but you may skip over them.

As extras, at the time the episode is created TV studios shouldalso be creating additional content to go along with the show. Instead of waiting for the episode airing to go back and THEN creating additional content (actor/director commentary, behind-the-scenes, etc…), why not make it part of the process of making a show?


Sikretong Malufeet says:


This could work to those kind of people who, because of work or for any other reasons miss their favorite TV Shows. Yes they can download thru bittorrent but they can only download the more popular ones (TV Shows). Alternatively, use PC TV then time and record it (from Cable signal, etc.), but the mentioned two ways of catching up with your favorite TV Shows also post some ups and downs, e.g. electricity bill (your PC will be set to record the show), “pixelated” or slightly dark/blurred video recorded, etc. So for a working person, this could be what they’re looking for. Can’t wait for my pirated copy, I kid I kid.

Alec (user link) says:


I’d buy them, depending on price and quality. If they’re better quality than iTunes (not difficult) and the price is similar to iTunes per episoide, I’m all in. Almost all of my time TV viewing time these days is keeping up with the 5 or 6 quality TV programs I enjoy, and I’m always behind.
It’s also important that these episodes are commercial-free.

Amazon…always thinkin’ ™.

Bryan (user link) says:

Re: Netflix by episode

I’m Director of Marketing at Peerflix, and I think our site would be a perfect fit for these DVDs. A rental market through Netflix is an option, but for people that would rather buy the DVD it’s good to know that they wouldn’t be stuck with them forever. My guess is that very few people would watch them more than once. Buy it on Amazon and trade it for something else on Peerflix when you’re done.

Robinson says:

Foreign TV

I don’t know how big of a market this could have, but I would definitely buy recordings from foreign TV. Lets say you want to see shows from Italian or Hungarian TV — almost impossible now. This would be of course usable only to people speaking the language since there would be no subtitles. But since there are so many people in US from somewhere else, this type of thing should have some market.

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