It looks like digital movie services just got another provider, and this time it may end up strengthening the iTunes Store.
Most people know Orange as the mobile phone provider who has been handing out different deals on movie tickets for almost a decade, but now will be offering a free movie rental service through iTunes. This is not an unlimited service, like Netflix or Hulu, but instead a simple allowance to users of a single film per week. That film can be selected and then watched for thirty days as a digital file, similar to how you rent films on iTunes currently. What this means for iTunes users is a more attractive reason to take their digital movie needs away from the Netflix mega-machine, and is especially necessary now that HBO Go has been launched. What is more important about this is the potential for free standing movie files that are available for mobile devices free of the Internet.
For Orange, this is the logical move for their brand image as they want to extend from their “by one get one free” movie ticket deal that came on every Wednesday. Now it is a part of Everything Everywhere, a group that also included T-Mobile and may indicate a sunny future for a T-Mobile iPhone.
The service is, however, not going to simply allow users any movie they want for free. Each month there will be a few options, and starting out they have options between The Wrestler, The Ghost, and the first part of Stephen Soderbergh’s epic about the Cuban revolutionary Che.