Two exciting announcements for cinephiles from the tech world today. First off, Netflix has added iPhone and iPod Touch compatibility to its widely used iPad application. I use the iPad app all the time, mostly for catching up on television series, and the iPhone is a welcome addition. Certainly, people will complain about the size of the screen and break out the ever popular David Lynch YouTube video, but I think it’s a big step in the right direction. The more screens available for content, the more opportunities filmmakers have of reaching audience.
Secondly, early this morning Boxee rolled out a new version of their Boxee Beta. The main improvement is what they are now calling the “Movie Library”, a collection of streaming films from around the web all in one place. Providers EZTakes, Indie Movies Online, MUBI and Openfilm join Hulu, Netflix and YouTube to make for the most full featured, comprehensive library on the web.
MUBI, formerly The Auteurs, is perhaps the biggest part of this announcement for cinephiles. Launched as a social network alongside the Criterion Collection, MUBI has an incredible rotating collection of classic and international cinema. Users can either pay a monthly fee of $12 for unlimited access to the entire collection or rent films for $3 apiece. You account is managed through MUBI’s site, allowing you to rent directly from Boxee on your television.
At this point, there is no excuse to miss out on all of these great films. Boxee is free so you can be up and running in no time. When the Boxee Box comes out later this fall, it will be a simple plug and play matter to get all of this content. Quality notwithstanding, has there ever been a better time to be a filmmaker or audience member?