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Amazon Video Rental - Download starts 24 hour viewing period??? Ridiculous

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Showing 1-25 of 159 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 22, 2011 9:17:41 PM PST
S. A. Brown says:
I bought a Kindle Fire on day one... and despite its little quirks, have loved it. I got it mainly to read and watch movies on long trips (where I am away from Wi-Fi). I am leaving on a 7 day trip to the mountains this Thursday and rented a couple of movies from Amazon.

TOTAL surprise when I found out that downloading the rental to the Kindle starts the 24 hour rental period. This is absurd. I can't believe how disappointing this is. The 24 or 48 hour rental period should start once I hit play (just like iTunes and every other system). I should have 30 days to start watching it from when I rented it, regardless of where I watch it.

This is a deal breaker. Basically, I can't rent movies on this unless I'm never away from a Wi-Fi for more than 24 hours. Unbelievable. PLEASE fix this or explain how it makes sense.

Posted on Nov 22, 2011 9:24:50 PM PST
I agree. Thank the MPAA.

Posted on Nov 22, 2011 10:08:53 PM PST
I agree. I've never rented a movie from amazon for this reason.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 22, 2011 10:15:27 PM PST
amandalee66 says:
I agree, and am also bothered by this. One of the reasons I bought it was also to download movies for trips when I will be without wi-fi, just like you. I suggest we all use the feedback link from the device itself, and let amazon know how we feel. It could make a difference.

Posted on Nov 22, 2011 10:57:05 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 22, 2011 10:57:42 PM PST
I do not think Amazon controls this, but the Luddites in the old media do. They always do. The cassette tape, VHS, difital music, digital books, and digital movies are all evil in their old, decaying eyes. Don't worry, all the media companies hindering progress will be extinct soon.

Posted on Nov 22, 2011 11:02:35 PM PST
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Posted on Nov 22, 2011 11:21:42 PM PST
That is not correct. From the Amazon Instant Video section:

Rental: You have 30 days to complete watching this 24-hour rental. You can choose to 'Watch Now' or 'Download' it to a compatible device. If you choose to 'Watch Now', you will start instantly streaming the video on your computer and you may later stream it on another compatible device. If you choose to 'Download' the video, you will be able to download the video to a compatible device and watch the video on that device while disconnected from the internet.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 22, 2011 11:23:15 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 22, 2011 11:28:58 PM PST
Dragi Raos says:
Erin, the point of going to a cabin in mountains or a sailing trip is *not* to be near "McDonald's, Burger King, Starbuck's, etc, etc, etc", but one could still be in a mood to watch a movie now and then.

Posted on Nov 22, 2011 11:37:06 PM PST
Dorsie says:
All of the pay-per-view streaming services work this way, and have for some time. It's not Amazon's choice, but is mandated by the film industry.

I never thought I'd rather see another complaint about e-book prices set by the publishers.

Posted on Nov 23, 2011 12:22:45 AM PST
S. A. Brown says:
There are a couple of incorrect posts above. On iTunes, you can download a rental to an iPhone or iPad or Laptop and have 30 days to begin watching it (I do that all the time). Until tonight, I really thought that was how Amazon rentals worked as well... I was either wrong, or they changed it when the Fire came out. It seems like they've changed it to be more of a streaming service than a download service... quite disappointing. The 24 or 48 hours from download is unique to Amazon, and it's definitely an Amazon policy, not a content licensor policy (I work as an executive in the film industry... this is a service issue, not an issue a licensor would deal with). The Android rentals and iTunes rentals both give you 30 days to download and start watching it.

Very often I am not near any sort of reliable cell service or Wi-Fi (Recently Panama, Guatemala, north of Canada... next week to wilderness in Idaho, next year Namibia). I've used my laptop for years to rent movies to take on trips through iTunes. The Kindle Fire seemed like a much smaller and more portable way to do the same thing. Other than buying the movies, or sideloading some other rental application... I just don't see how it can compete in that space now.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 23, 2011 12:49:55 AM PST
So S.A. Brown, you're saying that Amazon's currently posted policy regarding rentals, that Susan Lynn Umpleby quoted here (see above), are completely inaccurate? Have you contacted Amazon directly about this by calling KCS and asking them about it? I would be curious to know if this is really true and what Amazon has to say about posting contradictory policies on the website regarding the matter.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 23, 2011 12:57:48 AM PST
Did you read that carefully worded policy? In effect, downloading starts the 24 hour period. The same as clicking watch now.

PS - this is new (at least newer). I remember when I rented a movie from Amazon, then started the watching later (but - this was a Roku box, albeit streaming).

Don't know if you can sideload movies from Google, you have to have the latest version of the Market on your device (from what I've been told). They are restrictive in the devices you can use, they got rid of fastboot for rooting re drm purposes.

Posted on Nov 23, 2011 1:34:54 AM PST
S. A. Brown says:
Just to clarify... this is the Amazon policy (with emphasis added):

Viewing Period:
Once you begin watching the movie or TV show, you must finish watching it within a limited viewing period identified on the detail page (typically 24 or 48 hours). This period begins when you start playback of the video OR INITIATE A DOWNLOAD ON AN ANDROID TABLET DEVICE.

Found on this page:

I discovered it by attempting to download a rented movie from the "Cloud" to the "Device" and having a message pop up saying the 24 hour rental period was about to begin.

Posted on Dec 11, 2011 12:47:54 AM PST
SteveT says:
I just received a Kindle Fire and also presumed the video rental policy would be similar to iTunes. It is very disappointing that you don't have 30 days to start watching a downloaded video. As everyone has said above, this ruins much of the value of the device. It looks like I'm stuck using my old iPad for traveling since I can at least download some movies on it and not be forced to watch all of them within 24-48 hours of the download verses when I start actually watching them. I typically would download 3-4 movies when traveling, and watch them over the course of the trip, especially on the flight there and back. This was necessary since wifi is not available everywhere (or available but not worth the cost that hotels/airports charge).

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 11, 2011 1:50:21 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 11, 2011 1:54:57 AM PST
C. Scilley says:
I think you can rent it on the Amazon sight from your computer. Then you have 30 days to watch it on the Fire. But once it is on the Fire, you have 24 or 48 hours to watch it. If you rent it from the Fire, you do not get the 30 days grace period. This is the way it also works with my Roku.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 11, 2011 1:53:45 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 11, 2011 1:54:09 AM PST
C. Scilley says:
If I rent from a Roku box, the rental period starts right away also. You have to rent it on line from your computer, so then you would receive the grace period.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 11, 2011 1:57:03 AM PST
C. Scilley says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Dec 11, 2011 7:49:33 AM PST
Mary McManus says:
C. Scilley: He is trying to cut down what he carries with him, not add to it. That is certainly understandable.

Posted on Jan 21, 2012 1:23:19 PM PST
B Fidler says:
i'll add my complaint. This really is a show killer. I too have an ipad, but have preferred the Amazon ecosystem, movies are less expensive and love the size of the fire. Also, i feel it's a better portable media server. It takes a long time to download a movie so is not convenient to have to download on "the road". This inability to start the 24-48hr period at "play" really does suck!!! Come on, take care of your fans! A simple fix to truly have a viable ipad killer in play!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 21, 2012 1:42:40 PM PST
King Al says:
I'm just speculating here, but movies being less expensive than on iTunes might be the reason why the rental period starts when you download it as opposed to when you start watching it.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 25, 2012 1:53:03 PM PST
I contacted Amazon about this practice and I let them know how disappointed I was. S.A. Brown is correct. Amazon "apologized" that there rental policies don't meet my needs.

Posted on Feb 5, 2012 5:19:34 PM PST
I agree with all of you. I also bought 2 kindle fires (one for me, one for my wife) and used them happily on wi-fi. When it was time to take a vacation I discovered this RIDICULOUS policy. This makes them useless as a travel movie-watching device. I've also found that if you aren't connected to wi-fi, like in a plane, car, etc, the device sometimes tries to "phone home" before letting you use the content (books, movies) even if you have previously downloaded the content. This leaves you sitting on a plane unable to access your content. Beyond annoying. Apple got it right with the ipad. The kindle fire is a botched mess. I spend thousands at Amazon each year, but am reconsidering that because of this accursed device...

Posted on Feb 17, 2012 7:28:35 AM PST
I agree with S.A. Brown and all of the other disappointed, and angry, Kindle Fire owners. I am very upset with Amazon. I have been a loyal Amazon Prime member for years and have loved the company and its great services, until I tried renting a movie on my Fire. I assumed Amazon had the same policy as iTunes but as soon as I downloaded the movie the clock started counting down. I was going on vacation and had a long plane trip and wanted to download two or three movies to watch on the outbound and return trips. Well, I discovered that I can not do This with my Kindle Fire. I will not be renting any more movies from amazon as long as they have this policy. Does anyone know if I can rent movies from itunes to play on my Kindle Fire?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 17, 2012 7:32:32 AM PST
No jacob, unfortunately only Amazon content will play on the Kindle Fire. I agree with you 100% and have to add that even if you BUY a movie, most of the time it will not play on a plane, as the Fire tries to get on the internet, and when it can't it won't play the movie - even though you OWN it. I've abandoned my Kindle Fire, and bought an ipad. Even though I've owned every kindle since day 1, this is my last. INCREDIBLY disappointed, and not a word from Amazon regardless of my concerns.
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Discussion in:  Kindle forum
Participants:  84
Total posts:  159
Initial post:  Nov 22, 2011
Latest post:  11 days ago

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