Blockbuster Stories April 22, 2014

Mossberg: Apple is a movie studio and its next blockbuster is coming later this year

Recode’s Walt Mossberg is out with an interesting piece today taking a look at Apple after Steve Jobs and revisiting Tim Cook’s promise of new product categories across 2014. While comparing Apple and its product releases to movie studios— big blockbuster hits followed by sequels that often make more money— Walt says Apple execs have told him “impressive new products” are indeed on the way.

But I think the most useful way of thinking about Apple is to see it as a movie studio. Studios release blockbuster franchise movies every few years, and then try to live off a series of sequels until the next big, successful franchise. We are in the early stages of one such project right now: On May 2, Columbia Pictures will release “The Amazing Spider-Man 2,” the first of what may be several sequels to the original 2012 film, that was itself a reboot of an earlier series.

Just because these things are sequels doesn’t mean they’re bad, or even worse than the originals. Sometimes, as with “The Godfather Part II,” the sequel is considered by many to be even better than the original. (Of course, sometimes — as with “The Godfather Part III,” a sequel may be reviled as so bad that it’s unworthy of the series.)… And sequels can make more money — sometimes much, much more — than the originals.

While Mossberg has had relative success with Apple’s sequel products in recent years— despite a few hiccups with Maps and iOS 7— he claims “Apple executives have assured me that the second half of 2014 will have impressive new products.” Whether that includes a new game-changing product or “franchise” category remains to be seen.

Blockbuster Stories May 2, 2013

Blockbuster On Demand app finally launches on iPhone & iPad

Earlier this year Blockbuster relaunched its digital video rental service dubbed “Blockbuster on Demand” by releasing apps for Android, Roku, Samsung Smart TVs, PC & Mac and introducing new features such as 1080p HD streaming and 5.1-channel surround sound. The service hasn’t picked up much steam since relaunching in January, but today it appears Dish is pushing ahead by finally releasing an app for iPhone and iPad. 

Available as free download on the App Store now the app offers single title rental options that can be streamed instantly or saved for later viewing on any supported device. Users initially complained of no HD video support on mobile devices but, according to the app’s iTunes page, the iOS app does indeed support “stunning HD and full Surround Sound.”

•Thousands of hit movies and new releases – rent and watch instantly or save to your Watchlist and view later •Tons of movies you love – hand-selected titles with the highest ratings from Rotten Tomatoes® •Stream Instantly — phone, tablet, laptop, Samsung Smart TV, Roku, and more •Amazing sound and video – stunning HD movies in full Surround Sound •Easy shopping and viewing – prime movie watching experience •No subscription or late fees – pay only for what you watch

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