We all knew that YouTube would be making big changes when the site revamped its interface, right? Well, YouTube (Google, really) and Paramount are teaming up to bring you: films! Through both Google Play and YouTube, you will be able to rent up to 500 Paramount films over the next few weeks. Pricing on these films is average ($1.99 for older films and $4.99 for current HD films), but the big news here is that you can now rent movies via YouTube – who would have thought that YouTube would turn into a content provider?
Some avid YouTube users aren’t sure how they feel about the new movie deal. On the one hand, YouTube would be a convenient way to rent movies. On the other hand, YouTube is supposed to be a user-generated platform for, you know, users who want to make movies. Now those quaint little YouTube films will have to compete with giant movie productions.
Not Just Paramount
Word on the street is that Google has already sewn up movie deals with most of the massive movie production companies. The only company that’s still not on par with Google is Fox. Every other movie production company seems to have no problem betting on Google Plus – or is this the case? More likely, Google is pay lots and lots of money to seal deals with the big movie players. Why? Apple, of course! Google wants to get its own Google TV off the ground and it can’t do that without the help of those big product companies.
Since Apple TV has already taken off (and is, I can tell you, excellent), Google surely wants to grab those big players before Apple makes it impossible for product companies to negotiate with anyone else. Again, what’s really surprising is that Google has pulled YouTube into this deal, but we’ll see where that goes. All in all, this is a big and very wise move for Google if the company wants people to take Google TV seriously.
Is Google Still the Friendly Giant?
Google has always had a reputation for being the anti-Apple, but it’s becoming clear that the search giant isn’t as friendly as it once was. In fact, Google is largely turning into a massive corporation with its claws in nearly ever facet of current technology. Just think about it: Google Plus is Google’s social media bid; Google search is being revamped in many ways and is often considered the only search tool; Android and Google are teamed up (though maybe not for long); Google is working on bettering Google TV; and now Google has shook hands and exchanged bills with massive Hollywood production companies – you can’t get more corporate than that lineup.
It will be interesting to see how the whole YouTube movie rental deal works out in the future. Further, it will be interesting to see whether or not people get sick of Google – can this company spread itself any further? Is taking YouTube away from the people a good idea? To be fair, adding a video to YouTube is still possible even if you’re not a major motion picture company, but, I’m guessing, it will only be a matter of time before YouTube becomes something else entirely.