I tried the new video-on-demand service Amazon Unbox for Tivo yesterday, mainly because of the $15 free credit. Linking the Tivo to my Amazon account was easy as was the download. Amazon’s web site has a long way to go to beat Netflix in terms of discoverability of titles, though. They should really create a separate portal specifically for movies that you can download to Tivo.
My initial reaction is that the service is a teensy bit too expensive and the terms are too restrictive. (You have to watch the movie you download within 30 days and it evaporates off your Tivo 24 hour hours after you watch it.) Because of this, Netflix (or Blockbuster, for that matter) seems like a better value to me.
Still, as an Amazon fan and Tivo stockholder, I have high hopes for this. I think it will take off when the price comes down a bit, and it probably wouldn’t kill them to let you keep the movie on your Tivo for a week or a month, although that would matter much less to me than the price point. It seems like they should be able to bring the price down to less than $4 per movie for one day of viewing since I’m paying for so much of the infrastructure required to get the movie to my house. Maybe that will happen when there are more than one movie providers for Tivo.