Death of Ultraviolet digital service in the UK?

JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
I mentioned this in another post but felt it deserved its own topic.

For those who don't know Ultraviolet is  a service that provides digital copies to supplement films bought on Dvd's,  Blu-rays, and Ultra HD Blu-rays. I believe also that Ultraviolet extends to some films/tv primarily bought digitally as well, which means that you can your access your digital Ultraviolet collect on any streaming service that supports Ultraviolet (providing its in their catalogue). A good idea which gives consumers the confidence to buy a disc and know they'll be able to access it in digital form on their devices. It also gives confidence to consumers that their digital Ultraviolet collection can be accessed on potentially more then one streaming service...a good back up if for what ever reason the streaming service your using becomes inaccessible. 

The problem is the two major backers (TalkTalk TV Store, and Rakuten) of Ultraviolet in the UK have dropped the service, making it almost redundant. Flixster remains, but i believe even that has closed in the US, which makes you wonder how long before it also closes in the UK?

 I'm guessing the financial model that Ultraviolet used in the UK was not successful. To be a useful Ultraviolet really needs to be supported by big hitters like Amazon, iTunes, or Googleplay.  If you buy a dvd or blu-ray most of the new titles promote their digital copies on the front cover, its hard not to miss the branding. Which makes it very odd that its so badly supported now in the UK. The film studios have obviously invested a lot in Ultraviolet. I wonder if its going to stay, or is the service finished in the UK?

Comments

  • AshAsh Posts: 256Member
    Hi @Joe
    when Flixster Was brought out/restructured the social/community and the streaming/ultraviolet aspect were separated out and the ultraviolet aspect was rebranded into  'Flixster video' . So that's probably why you think it has been closed down.

     'Flixster video'  is still operating in both the UK and the US, from the U.K.'s point of view, separating out to the two sides made sense as it was only the ultraviolet aspect that operated in the UK. The rest of it didn't 

    Anybody that had a Flixster account when everything was separated out had their account and ultraviolet library automatically Made available on to 'Flixster video' and Should be able to login to Flixster video using the same username and password of they used to use for Flixster
  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    edited 21 May 2018, 4:54PM
    Thanks for the clarification @Ash Have to say the implementation of UV feels quite messy, particularly branding wise.  Now that we are down to one major UV service in the U.K. it feel like it should really be called Ultraviolet. Guess it makes sense as an add on if other steaming services provide UV. But now it’s down to a singular service it seems silly to go to something called Flixster for UV. Do UV own Flixster video I wonder, or does Flixster operate a service in  addition to UV?
  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    Having a read through the Wikipedia entry for Ultraviolet it gives the impression that the service is perhaps not doing so well, despite an increasing user base. In early 2018 both universal Studios and 20th Century Fox stopped supporting UV.  
    Interestlingly (again Wikipedia) Disney never signed up for UV, instead launching their own version “Disney Movies Anywhere”. In the states this has now changed to include other film studios not just Disney, and has been rebranded “Movies Anywhere”, with quite a few big movie studios signing up, and showing interest. Importantly Movies Anywhere has greater support with streaming partners Amazon video, iTunes, and Google play.

    I’d hazard a guess that UV is on the way out, the fall off of credible U.K. partners (Talk Talk tv store, Rakuten) is a big indicator. The rise of Movies Anywhere in the states suggests a more profitable version that’s quickly gaining support with Movie studios and streaming partners.


  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    edited 22 May 2018, 9:18AM
    Blimey a quick google with this new info (Movies Anywhere) has brought up this which does point to the demise of UV and the rise of Movies Anywhere

    http://cinegods.com/ultraviolet-calls-quits-disney-format-will-prevail-new-movies-anywhere-locker-initiative/

    and check this link too:

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/12/16462824/movies-anywhere-digital-movie-locker-disney-warner-bros-universal-twentieth-century-fox-sony
  • scottscott Posts: 1,890Member ✭✭✭
    edited 22 May 2018, 9:26AM
    Joe said:
    Blimey a quick google with this new info (Movies Anywhere) has brought up this which does point to the demise of UV and the rise of Movies Anywhere

    http://cinegods.com/ultraviolet-calls-quits-disney-format-will-prevail-new-movies-anywhere-locker-initiative/

    and check this link too:

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/12/16462824/movies-anywhere-digital-movie-locker-disney-warner-bros-universal-twentieth-century-fox-sony


    If only we lived in the US :'(

    They have had vudu (owned by Walmart) for 10 years which also accepted UV codes and had very high quality, there were rumours they would bring it to the UK (they own ASDA) but never materialised..

  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    From my “research” it seems very likely that UV will be replaced by Movies Anywhere, though I’ve only those articles to go on. It’s only US based for now.
    It seems that the question should be, when does “Movies Anywhere” launch in Europe?
  • scottscott Posts: 1,890Member ✭✭✭
    edited 22 May 2018, 9:48AM

    The question might not be 'when' but 'if' :'( - Disney have had 'Disney movies Anywhere' since 2014 in the US and it never made it to the UK...

    DisneyLife could have been another good contender for an app to add to YouView :)

  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    edited 22 May 2018, 10:43AM
    Looking at the sudden fall off of UV streaming partners on the U.K. I’m guessing that UV ( for what ever reason) is being dropped.

     It’s  obvious the film studios still believe in the idea of the digital rights  locker, and they still sell film digital rights with new discs.
    They seem to have found a winning formula in the US by getting the major streamers (Amazon, iTunes, google play) on board too. 
    Cant find any info on a U.K. launch but with the importance that the film studios attach to digital rights locker, I’d be surprised if Movies Anywhere didn’t launch in the U.K. at some point.
     I guess UV never got the support from the Amazon and iTunes big hitters, now in the US they’re all jumping on board Movies Anywhere. Admittedly paramount is yet to sign up to Movies Anywhere, but most of the other major studios are members.

    Perhaps just a matter of time? (Though I do understand your scepticism)




  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    edited 22 May 2018, 10:16PM
    Ash said:
    Hi @Joe
    when Flixster Was brought out/restructured the social/community and the streaming/ultraviolet aspect were separated out and the ultraviolet aspect was rebranded into  'Flixster video' . So that's probably why you think it has been closed down.

     'Flixster video'  is still operating in both the UK and the US, from the U.K.'s point of view, separating out to the two sides made sense as it was only the ultraviolet aspect that operated in the UK. The rest of it didn't 

    Anybody that had a Flixster account when everything was separated out had their account and ultraviolet library automatically Made available on to 'Flixster video' and Should be able to login to Flixster video using the same username and password of they used to use for Flixster
    It seems Flixster Video in the US has indeed gone. UV is on very uncertain ground:

    https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/20/17033602/flixster-video-service-shuts-down
     
  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    Another article about the growing success of Movies Everywhere in the US:

    https://www.mediaplaynews.com/betting-on-movies-anywhere/
  • redchizredchiz Posts: 4,789Member ✭✭✭
    Yeah, until that gets left high and dry for the next "big thing" ....

    The industry really has no interest whatsoever in making it easy for consumers to use their content freely, quite the opposite in fact.
  • Orange BucketOrange Bucket Posts: 22Member
    I am sure that there were sound financial reasons for TalkTalk and Rakuten to drop UV support. However for me it was always UV that made them a credible alternative to Amazon or Google for streaming. It provided the safety net. Amazon and Google aren't going anywhere. Rakuten aren't small fry, I believe, but how important a market is the UK for them? As for TalkTalk, well ...

    Since they dropped UV I don't think I've purchased a single title from TalkTalk as their prices are no different to Amazon or Google. Only their tendency to aggressively price a new release at a more reasonable price for a short period has made me purchase from Rakuten. Both are going to look ridiculously exposed if they end up against a Movies Anywhere featuring Disney, Amazon, Apple and Google and also making available the UV content purchased from Rakuten and TalkTalk in the first place.

    I will remain concerned about UV in the UK until Flixster Video gets some backup, but it is the content that I only have on TalkTalk or Rakuten without the UV safety net that is looking more vulnerable.
  • stereohavenstereohaven Posts: 30Member
    edited 31 January 2019, 1:51PM
    UV confirmed as closing on the 31st July 2019:

    "We are writing to inform you that the UltraViolet service is planning to shut down on July 31, 2019. You are receiving this message because you signed up for an UltraViolet Library or for a service that created an UltraViolet Library for you.

    What does this mean for you?

    Between January 31 and July 31, 2019

    You can continue to access your UltraViolet movies and TV shows through the retailer(s) linked to your UltraViolet Library. You can also continue to purchase new movies and TV shows and redeem digital codes by following the redemption instructions. Depending on the retailer, these new purchases and redemptions may or may not be added to your UltraViolet Library.

    Linking your UltraViolet Library to additional retailers can maximize your access to your Library and help avoid potential disruption.

    After the shutdown date

    Your UltraViolet Library will automatically close and, in the majority of cases, your movies and TV shows will remain accessible at previously-linked retailers.
    You can continue to make online purchases and redeem codes, but these may only be available through that retailer, and will not be added to your UltraViolet Library.

    What should you do now?

    As soon as possible, login at myuv.com and choose Retailer Services to verify the retailers linked to your UltraViolet Library. If your Library is not currently linked to a retailer or if you would like to link to additional participating retailers, select one or more retailers to link to your UltraViolet Library.

    Don't unlink or close your UltraViolet Library, as UltraViolet and retailers will be working together to maximize your continued access to movies and TV shows.

    Look for further communications from UltraViolet and your retailers over the coming months, as some retailers may disconnect from UltraViolet before July 31."

    Here is the FAQ link if anyone needs it: https://www.myuv.com/faq
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,818Member ✭✭✭
    Went to do this, got offered Flixster, and it 404ed on me. I have let them know....
    Does HDMI stand for Hardly Dare Mention It?
  • Am I the only one who's never heard of it??
  • stereohavenstereohaven Posts: 30Member
    Roy said:
    Went to do this, got offered Flixster, and it 404ed on me. I have let them know....
    I have never got Flixster to work!
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,818Member ✭✭✭
    Am I the only one who's never heard of it??
    Yes, but don’t sweat it. Ultraviolet have probably never heard of you either  :p
    Does HDMI stand for Hardly Dare Mention It?
  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    I can’t even remember whether Flixster is still a thing now I The UK. Hey anyway Youview forums with their finger on the pulse, looks like we called this one right.

    Wonder what happens with all those dvd’s/Blu-rays still for sale with UV/digital codes? 

    All in all have to say digital ownership as a concept sucks. 
  • JoeJoe Posts: 1,993Member ✭✭✭
    It seems Flixster works for me.

    Just relinked my account. Warning to others that if you haven’t used Flixster for a while, it’s likely it’s unlinked from your UV account. Double check if you want to keep access to your UV content 
  • tygrtygr Posts: 1Member
    edited 2 February 2019, 2:22PM
    I’m messing about with all this now. Discovered I had content that was sitting in an old TalkTalkTV account which I’ve successfully moved across to Rakuten but can’t link that to UV to link elsewhere. 

    I’ve set up a Movies Anywhere account via a VPN but can’t get it to synch any of my libraries yet although it does say to allow 24 hours. It’s such a messy set of different providers with different systems. I’ve now got accounts across two continents and nothing is really working yet!

    Not so bothered about stuff I have on DVD/ Blu-ray but don’t want to lose stuff I’ve bought as digital content only. 
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