Amazon Handing Out Digital Flicks As Bonuses For Disc Buys

In a push to get people buying DVDs and Blu-rays online rather than off shelves, Amazon is tossing in a nice little bonus: a digital copy of the film to rent or keep, HD Digest reports:

Over 300 discs qualify, but as that number includes both Blu-ray and standard DVDs as well as different versions of each , the actual amount of titles sits somewhere around 100-150. The list is impressive though. Classics like ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ ‘The Terminator’ and ‘The Usual Suspects’ all come with a free digital rental. Newer films such as ‘Funny People’ and ‘Bruno’ benefit from the bonus rental as well.

From the Terms of Service it certainly looks like this is something Amazon plans on continuing for new release films. According to one of the rules “If you purchase the qualifying DVD or Blu-ray disc as a pre-order, you will not be able to watch the Amazon Video On Demand version until the applicable DVD or Blu-ray disc is released.”

Is this something that would entice you to buy from Amazon rather than somewhere else?

Amazon Includes Free Digital Rental With Physical Disc Purchases [High-Def Digest]


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  1. tbax929 says:

    If you buy a movie from Amazon before its release date, don’t they ensure you’ll receive it on its release date anyway? I don’t buy movies, so I could be wrong. However, that’s how it works with CDs. If that’s the case, I don’t see the benefit of getting it On Demand, If that’s not the case, then there is a benefit to getting the movie On Demand before you receive the physical disc. Either way, this wouldn’t entice me to buy any more from Amazon than I already do, which is quite a bit.

    • doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

      If you pay for 2-day shipping (or have Prime).
      If not, you will be like me with the Blu-ray of Star Trek. Which showed up on the Saturday after the Tuesday it was released. But I saved a whole dollar.
      Amazon is close to losing a customer.

  2. mrsultana can't get a password to work says:

    I think this is a GREAT benefit and something that is going to get me on Amazon for all movies now. The DigitalCopy that Disney has been doing actually got me buying their BluRay/DVDs instead of renting.
    With ANY movie or TV show I buy these days, my first thought is how to get it on my iPhone, laptop, AppleTV, etc. But, of course, I am not admitting to ever using programs like MTR, Handbrake, or DVDoneX2, because that would make me a criminal for simply exercising fair use. So Amazon has made my life less stressful/guilt-ridden! When will they get more movies?

    • tbax929 says:

      You know, that’s a good point I hadn’t thought of. I often transfer TV shows from my TiVo to my iPod and never thought to do the same with movies. Although I’m guessing from your post I’d have to do it illegally, which I don’t really want to do. Is there a way to legally do that?

      • morlo says:

        It is not illegal to copy for your own use content that you own. (And if it were anyone who didn’t break such a law wouldn’t deserve the title of human being)

        • johnperkins21 says:

          It’s illegal to break the copy protection on the DVD to get it into a digital format. In the vast majority of cases, making a digital backup of your DVD is a violation of the DMCA and the EULA you agree to by opening the package.

          Fair Use gives you the right to make a backup copy, but the DMCA protects the copy protection schemes on the discs, which need to be circumvented to make that copy.

  3. chiieddy says:

    My husband got one of these and the selection was slim at best. He complained that all that seemed available were single epsiodes of TV shows.

    • FrugalFreak says:

      this is a different offer than the NBC On-demand one with purchase of dvd’s. With this one you get to watch movie you just bought. Instant gratification. MPAA and studios are trying to use digital system to thier methods to re-control thier market since dvd sales have slowed. they want all digital and all DRMed..

  4. rdclark says:

    I find digital copies useful for playback on my laptop when traveling. (I draw the line at watching movies on something as tiny as an iPod screen.) I buy most of my Blu-ray titles from Amazon anyway, so this will be a nice bonus, assuming they continue to be price-competitive with the B&M stores, and match the big-box sale prices on major releases as they do now.

  5. Etoiles says:

    They’re also giving out on-demand credit like candy. My dad doesn’t do downloaded stuff, so he’s been forwarding me his $5 promo codes he’s gotten while Christmas shopping… add that to the ones I’ve gotten, and I’ve got something like $35 in on-demand video credit and a few free *.mp3s waiting for me to use.

    Honestly, I buy from Amazon for price, selection, and service, more-or-less in that order. Bonus credits and extra downloads etc. are nice but I’m already pretty motivated to stick with them, heh.

  6. ktetch says:

    I tried the Disney Digital download that went with Nightmare before Christmas the other day. Tried on the desktop – wanted extra DRM downloads for windows media player. Ok, tried it on the wifes laptop then (since I refuse to have iTunes on my system) and that wouldn’t work either, and the wmp version gave the same error as the desktop.

    I really need to get another batch of the “DRM, it just doesn’t work” T-shirts printed…

  7. jbl-az says:

    Funny, I just bought my first BluRay disk at Wal-Mart (Harry Potter 6), and it includes a free digital copy too. Is this really unique to Amazon? Or does Amazon have a lot of movies that don’t include this in the box?

    • Tmoney02 says:

      This is special becuase it is movies that do not come with digital files when you buy the disc. Normally you would have to buy the disc and the digital form if you wanted both.

  8. yzerman says:

    This is a bit different than the digital copy most movies are coming with for free already, when I bought the dark knight through amazon last December, they sent me a free copy of it on the amazon, unbox video service as well, so I could watch the movie on my laptop even before the disk was in my hands. Which was a nice perk, not having to wait on shipping of the disk to watch the movie.

  9. HogwartsProfessor says:

    Nah. I buy movies there anyway. I don’t care about digital copies, because I don’t usually watch on my computer, and some movies come with one anyway, like The Dark Knight. That’s the only one I care about; it’s on my laptop so I can watch it if I’m stuck somewhere and happen to have my computer. Unfortunately, the movie is longer than my battery life, so I’d have to have a plug!

  10. theblackdog says:

    If it means I could stream it through my Roku box, why the heck not?

    I only buy cheap DVD’s from them anyway.

  11. FrugalFreak says:

    no captions on the watch instantly = no Buy from Amazon. The gift is useless.

  12. WelcomeToMyWorld says:

    It’s so-o-o-o-o easy to make your own digital copy, if you already have the DVD. You can make it with captions (or not), you can copy the extras and deleted scenes if you want, you can even use the director’s audio track if you want.

    And no, this is not illegal. It’s called a backup copy and it’s perfectly legitimate. Just don’t share it with anyone else.