Amazon's New Video Service Part Netflix, Part YouTube
Movies, TV shows will stream directly computer, no huge download required
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 17, 2008 5:20 PM CDT
TiVo allows tv and movie downloads from's older service, Unbox.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Amazon entered the streaming video tangle today with Amazon Video on Demand, a service that resembles Netflix and Hulu far more than the company’s Unbox service, Ars Technica notes. While Unbox functioned on a principle similar to the iTunes Store, Amazon Video will stream movies and TV shows directly to customers' computers (and, later, TVs), cutting long download times.

Amazon wants to keep an eye on its content like everyone else, but unlike subscription Netflix, Amazon will charge for each TV show or movie. Since it’s a streaming service, users won’t have a hard copy when the transaction is done, perhaps spooking potential customers. Amazon promises to assuage these fears with a special section for purchased files on its site—accessible from wherever consumers log in.