When in July movie rental and streaming service Lovefilm inked a deal with Widevine, a streaming media firm specialising in DRM that works across multiple devices, it was widely rumoured that a console-based delivery platform was on the way. These rumours were today confirmed, as Sony Computer Entertainment Europe confirmed that Lovefilm was coming to the PlayStation 3 in the UK.
The service will sit directly in the XMB, giving subscribers to Lovefilm's movie rental service the ability to stream films online to their PS3s. It is the second such deal Lovefilm has agreed to with Sony; in March, a service was rolled out enabling those with advanced Bravia-series Sony televisions connected to the Internet to access the firm's streaming services. Talking to GameSpot, Lovefilm confirmed that it was "very confident" that the service would launch by the end of 2010.
The services operate at standard resolution and are available on an unlimited basis to those on all but the lowest Lovefilm packages. The £5.99 a month package will give users two hours of online time, while those on the £7.99 a month plan get four hours. Those paying £9.99 or more get unlimited access. Lovefilm does not, however, offer the full range of movies available via the firm's online pay-per-view services or postal DVD and Blu-ray offerings--just under 2,000 titles will be available at launch, which represents approximately three per cent of the firm's library. This should expand to approximately six per cent next year once the firm rolls out TV episodes that are currently available through its Web-based online service.
Lovefilm confirmed to GameSpot that it will not be offering its pay-per-view service on the PS3 given that Sony already offers such a service via the PlayStation store. The company also confirmed that it has plans to start streaming movies in high definition but that there was currently no time frame for this.