Wacky World of Movie Pricing

The pricing for movies, once they leave the big screen, is, in a word, wacky.

There is no apparent rhyme nor reason for the price structure when purchasing DVD, Blu-ray (BD), or Digital (downloadable, or Cloud-based) formats.

The main prices for discs and packages shown here will be taken from Amazon, one of the most competitive pricing retailers in the world.

Furious 7For our first example let’s look at the upcoming release of Furious 7.  As of today, the pre-order price offered at Amazon for the package containing a BD, DVD, digital (i.e., downloadable via iTunes) and an Ultraviolet (UV) copy (redeemable via VuDu, Flixster, etc.) is $22.33.  There is also available a one-disc DVD-only package available for $19.21.  Or, if you prefer just having the online digital UV version, VuDu offers it for $14.99 (SD, HD, or HDX).

Looking at the prices above, there is absolutely no logic.

Consider that a DVD by itself will cost you $19.21 but for only $3.12 more you can add the Blu-Ray disc plus an iTunes digital copy and a UV copy for your VuDu library.  That makes no sense at all.

The above really makes one ask why it cost so much for the lone DVD version or for just the UV version from VuDu? (Please note that VuDu is owned by Wal-Mart, home of “Live Better. Save Money.”)

Admittedly not all offerings are as generous as Furious 7, so, we will take another movie that has been out for a while.

John WickOn Amazon, today, John Wick is available in DVD and UV (i.e. for Flixster) for $9.69.  If you add the BD to that you may purchase the 3 versions for $11.99.  In the deal the BD is the only additional format, for an extra $2.30.  This is not as good of a deal as Furious 7, but it still shows pretty weird pricing.  However, if you just want the digital version, Flixster offers it for $13.99 SD or $14.99 HD, prices that are higher than either of the other offerings.

InsurgentOne more example.  Insurgent.  The BD/Digital edition is $17.92.  For $13.99 the DVD/Digital is available.  VuDu offers the movie in SD for $17.99, seven cents higher than the BD/Digital package and it is even worse for HD or HDX, with a price of $19.99.  If you have 3D capabilities, for only $19.99 you can get the 3D BD/BD/DVD/Digital package.

As a self-professed movie maniac I had been looking at forgetting BD and DVD altogether and going all digital via VuDu, but when one looks at the above pricing it makes absolutely no sense at all.  Other than for profiteering or price gouging.

Therefore, until the powers that be (movie moguls and retailers) can create a pricing formula that drastically reduces digital-only prices this movie lover will only purchase the best deal for the most versions that may be available (ideally like the Furious 7 package), if only because with that package the companies make less profit compared to the other offerings.

Over For Now.

Main Street One

Kindle Fire HD Review

A Main Street One review, once again based upon use not on the specifics of the technology.

I have never owned an iPad, though I have used them. I have also used various other tablets, such as the Samsung Galaxy and Google Nexus. I have owned the Toshiba Thrive 10.1″ tablet. I must say, for the money, Kindle Fire HD 7″ (without special offers) is the hands-down winner for my specific purposes.

I am not a gamer, so I cannot comment on the comparison there. My needs for a tablet device, are, and the review reflects usage, as follows: reading while traveling; easy access of email (my yahoo, hotmail, gmail personal and my business godaddy accounts) which are all loaded, synched and ready to go; listening to my favorite few hundred songs; to watch the occasional movie; to be able to view my own photos and videos whenever I wish; accessing my facebook and twitter accounts; surfing the web when not in front of my Mac or my laptop.

Kindle Fire HDYes, I know it may be limited, but those are my parameters. I originally thought my Thrive would replace my laptop but it did not. I believe that I will always have a laptop for various things I need to do. The Thrive was, in essence, my learning curve on exactly what I wanted, and needed, in a smaller portable device to use mainly while traveling. I carry my Kindle and my 15.6″ laptop (with all cords, chargers and a variety of other items) in my Wenger Swiss Gear 16-inch Legacy Checkpoint-Friendly computer case.

The Kindle Fire HD has fantastic WiFi capabilities; never an issue. Near a hotspot? Connect. Easy as that. I have not yet had it lose a connection. The device has fantastic optics; brilliant colors that are alive and pop. It is a pleasure to show my photos to others on the Fire HD. I did match it directly against the iPad, Thrive and Galaxy and the visual is better than the competition. Dolby Digital Plus definitely delivers the goods. The sound is great. And when you plug in a good (not cheap) headset be prepared to fill yourself full of high quality sonic. Word docs, pdfs, and spreadsheets have all been viewed successfully.

Kindle Fire HDWhen I got the Thrive one of the reasons is that I thought a 10 inch screen would be better to read books when I travel. And, in many ways, it is. But I am more than satisfied with the Fire HD 7″ screen when I read. It is easy on the eyes and the form factor is also more comfortable when reading.

I am getting pretty close to the advertised 11 hours of operational battery time, which is excellent. That means when flying coast to coast I am able to use my Kindle while sitting in the terminal, during the flight, sitting again during a layover, and then the continuation flight, without having to worry about running out of juice (and/or searching the airport terminal for the sometimes elusive outlet).

As the Kindle PowerFast charger was on sale when I got my Fire HD, I purchased it. I am glad I did. At first I was a bit disappointed that it was not included with the device, but, at this price-point, it makes business sense that it is not. Amazon has delivered an outstanding device. Yes, it is all tied to their content, but that also makes the Fire HD very attractive due to all of that content.

All in all, the Kindle Fire HD exceeds all of my expectations and I highly recommend it to anyone with the caveat that I have not used it with any games and do not plan to.

Over For Now.

Main Street One

A Short Crime Story – the download

In 2001 computer/cyber crime was in its infancy.

Winston Reilly had an opportunity to make millions in an apparently risk-free operation.

All he had to do was simply steal the next generation security software, Security Achievement System (SASy for short), created by small-player TeleComm, at the company’s office.

Sometimes things are not quite so easy.

Download the Mystery and Suspense eBook the download.

A short crime story by Scott D. Welch. Highly recommended. PDF version only $0.99. Pay securely via PayPal.

It is also available through Amazon for Kindle here: the download, for $0.99.

Over For Now.

Main Street One

Darkness Descends – A Crime Thriller

Darkness Descends, the crime thriller by Scott Frank (aka Scott D Welch) is available on Kindle or as a quality paperback edition.

New York Times bestselling author, Clive Cussler, said this: “I truly enjoyed it. A real spellbinder with a multitude of twists and turns through a labyrinth of intrigue. A read not easily forgotten…a timeless tale of suspense.”

Two weeks prior to graduation Chris Walker, high school senior and state champion in the 100- and 200-meter dashes, jogs by a 7-Eleven store and hears a sound in the alley. Curious, he slows and, while witnessing what he believes to be a murder, accidentally kicks a can. He is spotted and immediately turns and runs, narrowly escaping.

He does not know what to do or where to go until events force him to confront his innermost principles, and corresponding fears, and what follows becomes a cat and mouse game leading the police into a mountain community in a desperate attempt to free the town’s mayor, who had been kidnapped as part of a master plan devised by the two men Chris had seen earlier.

The Kindle version is available here: Darkness Descends Kindle Edition.

For those who prefer the actual book: Darkness Descends Quality Paperback.


Over For Now.

Main Street One