In the early 80s when I was a young child there were only two types of movie watching experience available: I could either go to the cinema or wait to watch a movie on TV. My choice of movie was severely limited by what was out in the cinema or what was on the TV. But as the 80s progressed and videos began to become a mainstream entertainment option it quickly became apparent that my choices in movies were about to grow exponentially. So it was with great excitement when one evening my dad arrived home with a VCR and a couple of videotapes.
This excitement would grow on my first visit to the local video shop where I realised that my choice in movie was limited only by my young age. But still there were a huge number of films and these were aranged on the shelves of the shop using the same genres and categories that movies are arranged today on websites such as Amazon Prime, Google Play, Cinema Now and Talk Talk TV.
These new devices broadened our movie choices from the handful of movies on TV or at the cinema to as many videos would fit on the shelves of our local video shop. However despite having more options the days of video were far from perfect. For a start, in terms of comfort, we had to go out and fetch our favourite movie instead of beiong able to press a couple of buttons as we can do today with Amazon, Youtube etc. Video cassettes were also very big and unwieldy and took up a huge amount of room, compare this to today’s movie collections which take up no physical room but merely some memory on your computer.
The introduction of DVDs in 1995 partly solved the problem of movies taking up too much room, but they did not make movies instantly available and they were still a physical product to be bought, borrowed and sold. What the world was gearing up for was a movie experience beyong cases, covers, scratches and towards a digitally stored library of movies that could be bought from online retailers with an ease not familiar to those familiar with video shops with movies sold out and fines for late returns.
In the early 2000s this breakthrough became a reality thanks to improved bandwidth and internet connectivity. The popularisation of online movies was spearheaded by YouTube and then the rise of netflix which made watching full movies online extremely popular.
The era of Streaming
Right now I am watching TV through a Now Box via an internet connection provided by Talk Talk. On the TV there are a range of viewing options available, including streaming movies on YouTube, buying from the Sky Store and also I can watch movies on the traditional channels which are accessed through App icons on the main menu.
This is just the tip of the tip of the iceberg with regards to my movie options. None the least of these is my Amazon prime account – a huge bank of movies, many provided free and other newer titles that you can buy for about half the price of a cinema ticket. Just this weekend last gone I watched three movies: Notes on Blindness, 10 Cloverfield Lane and contagion through my Amazon Account. I also have a YouTube account so an added option is to simply search for the movie on that site and buy or rent it.
As an iPad user I also have iTunes and iStore accounts and buy or rent movies regularly so I can watch them on long trips on coaches or trains. These days I no longer have to wait for a movie like I did in my youth: every released movie is merely a click away.
Contact Details of Movie Streaming sites
Amazon – Contact Amazon on 0800 4961081 about your Amazon Prime movie purchase.
Apple – Phone the Apple Online Store on 0800 048 0408.
Google Play – Contact Google play on 0800 328 6081.
Netflix – Contact Netflix customer service team by telephone on 0800 096 8879.
Talk Talk TV – Speak to a member of the Talk Talk TV Customer Service team on 0345 172 0088.
YouTube – If you are not happy with a purchase from YouTube then you can visit the Purchases Page on the YouTube site. From there click on the help icon near the footer and request they will phone you on the number you provide.