LOVEFiLM joins Mubi on PlayStation 3
Today the LOVEFiLM film rental service has joined Mubi in partnering with Sony's PlayStation 3 and users of the console, which is rapidly turning into an entertainment hub for the home, can now sign up and run their existing LOVEFiLM account through the PS3.
What does that mean? Well you can stream the catalogue of films and television series to the console directly, you can subscribe, pay per view, or see some films free.
You can see the LOVEFiLM streaming catalogue online at their site and you can see that there are four thousand one hundred and fourty four films that you can watch when you have a LOVEFiLM account, eight hundred and one film that you can watch for a single fee, and fifty two free films.
I thought that the free films might be complete rubbish, but surprisingly there is one good one in there, An American Werewolf in London is totally free to watch. Unfortunately most of them are episodes from a couple of different series, but there's a few in there. Good enough to check the quality and service before buying one.
As soon as I read the story on the PlayStation blog I just checked my PS3 and the LOVEFiLM icon was there under the Movies tab already, without any update. That's slightly different to Mubi where you have to search for it in the store and install it.
Selecting the LOVEFiLM icon installs a small 2.2MB file which allows you to connect to the LOVEFiLM online service, you can explore the films available, which the help file states are two thousand plus, and read some of the FAQ's before signing up.
My concern is the quality. For getting your hands on a Blu-ray or even a DVD is going to give you better quality than the streaming being offered. The minimum specifications on the service state a 2Mb broadband connection and the film will play within five seconds, no downloading, straight streaming. Which raises the further question, will LOVEFiLM cope with the demand?
For me I'll still be a DVD and Blu-ray fan, for I've yet be offered the same picture quality with a 5.1 audio track, and without that my home cinema system is wasted.
Still, there are films that I don't need the cinema experience to watch, and for quick and dirty entertainment value, the streaming is a good option, particularly as it's an addition to the existing membership.