Disney and four other major American studios are launching this online service to create a virtual video library.

Faced with the continuing drop in DVD sales, Hollywood is trying a new approach. On Wednesday, October 11, five of the six major US film studios launched a new joint online service in hopes of boosting digital sales. Called Movies Anywhere, it allows you to build a collection of movies that can be viewed everywhere, regardless of the shop where they were purchased.

Concretely, this means that its users can watch a feature film acquired on Apple’s iTunes platform from their Android smartphone, the Google operating system. Or a movie purchased from Amazon on their Roku TV box. Simply download the Movies Anywhere application, which automatically synchronizes the digital video library.

”  It’s a big step forward for consumers,” says Karin Gilford, the service’s manager. They will never need to remember where they bought a movie or on what device they can watch it . ” By freeing themselves from ecosystems, the studios hope to give more value to legal downloads.

Change of strategy

The idea is not new. It was launched in 2014 by Disney. In recent months, the creator of Mickey had begun negotiations with his Hollywood colleagues to join his platform. Four were convinced: Warner Bros, Twentieth Century Fox, Universal and Sony Pictures. Only Paramount is still missing the call, due to a dispute over financial terms. The service, only available in the United States, already offers more than 7,000 films.

The launch of Movies Anywhere is a change of strategy. Until now, Disney’s rivals were betting on the UltraViolet offer, which allows downloading the digital version of a movie bought on DVD or Blu-ray. The goal was to boost sales.