Telstra’s BigPond ISP has launched a legal movie download service to the Australian market,

BigPond Group Managing Director, Justin Milne, made the announcement at a press conference this morning. The service will launch with more than 1000 titles, featuring a range of movies form recent blockbusters to aging classics. The service will also include TV shows, said Milne.

“For years people have dreamt of being able to download movies and TV shows over the internet. From today, BigPond Movie members can legally download a huge choice of movies, TV shows, sport, short films and music videos, direct to their PCs or notebooks and watch them on demand in full-screen, digital quality via BigPond Movie Downloads,” he said.

Episodes of current season television series, including The Shield, Rescue Me, Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis will be available to download the day after they first screen on free-to-air television or Foxtel.

The catalogue will be updated with new titles added each month and will include a varied selection from more than 7,500 titles from Columbia, Tristar, Screen Gems, Sony Classics, MGM and UA films – all distributed in Australia by Sony Pictures Entertainment.

“Similar to a video store, customers can ‘rent’ content to view as many times as they want in 24 hours or on a weekly basis. Once the rental period is over, the content is automatically deleted from their PC,” Milne said.

Music videos, which can be watched full screen with digital sound, can be purchased for $3.95, with no use-by date.

Prices range from $1.95 for short television shows to $5.95 for recent release feature films. BigPond members get a 20 per cent discount on the standard prices.
With a BigPond Cable Standard or Cable Extreme broadband service, customers can view movies almost immediately after they commence the download, as the content will continue downloading in the background, while they watch.

Sony Pictures Television, Australia-New Zealand Managing Director, Jack Ford said, “At Sony Pictures Television, we pride ourselves on being leaders in digital distribution and partnering with the best. That’s why we have teamed up BigPond, Australia’s broadband leader to provide movie downloads on-demand.”

Mr Milne said, “We are delighted to be partnering with the top Hollywood studios, independent distributors such as Dendy, Becker and Madman, documentary specialists like Exero and Discovery International and leading broadcasters including the ABC and Granada Television for our movies service and Sony BMG, Warner and Universal for music video downloads.”

“BigPond Movie Downloads is the natural extension of our online DVD rental service, providing customers with the choice of movie delivery via broadband direct to their chosen computer or to their home via the post,” Mr Milne said.

“BigPond Movie Downloads is bringing customers new convenience in home entertainment. You can watch what you want, when you want and once you’ve downloaded your selections to your laptop, you can watch them almost anywhere, from the train to the office.

All BigPond Movies and Movie Downloads content is unmetered for BigPond members and there are no late fees ever. BigPond Movies Downloads operates only on Windows XP Home and Windows XP Pro systems.


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