Purchasing Digital Copies of Movies Online

By Jessica Drew
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People today watch movies on far more devices than just their home televisions. There are several digital media players, such as the iPad or video iPod, that people of all ages and backgrounds use to watch movies while on the go. With this type of lifestyle becoming increasingly popular, more and more people are choosing to purchase digital copies of movies online.

You Don’t Have to Buy the Movie Twice

If you want to play movies on your home television and utilize digital copies of the movie on your mobile device, you do not have to buy the movie twice. In most cases, for a new movie purchases, you will not need any DVD copy software either. Almost all new HD DVDs and Blu-ray Discs come with what’s called a Universal Digital Copy. This is a separate disc included with your purchase that will not play in any DVD or Blu-ray Disc player. However, if you insert the disc into almost any computer's disc drive, you can access a code that will take you to an online site that will allow you to download digital copies of the movie. You can download copies in standard formats or in MPEG format, which is the format most mobile devices use to play movies.

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A Universal Digital Copy is included with the purchase of almost all new DVDs. If you have a collection of older DVDs that you already own, however, obtaining digital copies of these movies will require the use of DVD copy software.

How Much do Digital Copies of Movies Cost?

In general, digital copies of movies cost the same or slightly less than physical copies of the movie do. You can expect to pay just as much for the digital copy of a brand new, popular movie as you would for the physical copy.

Where to Buy Digital Copies of Movies Online

Several large, online retailers sell digital movies these days. Purchasing movies from these retailers is easy. Once you download the movie, it’s yours to watch as much as you want. The following online stores are the most well known for online movie sales:

  • Amazon: Amazon.com holds more than 75,000 movie and television titles for sale in its Video on Demand store. Download prices at Amazon are some of the most competitive. For an additional fee, you can also watch digital copies of a movie on your home television.
  • iTunes: You must first have an iTunes account, but iTunes possesses possibly the largest collection of digital movie and TV titles for sale. Titles cost between $4.99 and $19.99, and most are in HD. For a smaller fee, you can also rent digital movies from iTunes, but you can only access and view the movie once within 30 days from the purchase date.
  • Cinema Now: This is an online store operated by Best Buy. Cinema Now has most popular movie and TV titles for sale or rental, similar to iTunes.

Once you purchase your digital copies of movies online, you’ll want to store them somewhere secure – most likely on an external hard drive. Digital movies take up a lot of space on a hard drive. If your laptop or desktop has a DVD burner, you can also burn copies of the movies to a DVD for storage purposes.

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