Following a beta period that began over the summer, online retailer Amazon.com has officially launched their Video on Demand service.
With Amazon.com Video on Demand, Mac and PC users can watch streaming movies and television shows using Adobe Flash. The technology does not require you to download the movie or television show prior to watching, and operates without any commercials.
The new system replaces Amazon.com's Unbox service, which required PC-only software to operate. Unbox was dependent on Windows Media Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology that hadn't been made available for Mac OS X. Because Amazon.com Video on Demand utilizes Adobe Flash instead, that restriction has been lifted.
Amazon.com Video On Demand lets you purchase or rent TV shows and movies using the same payment method you use with your Amazon.com account. You can watch the shows on your computer or on a television using a TiVo Series 2 or Series 3 Digital Video Recorder (DVR) device; the service is also compatible with Sony Bravia TVs equipped with Bravia Internet Video Link. You can also connect your computer to your TV and watch video from there (the service is not compatible with the Apple TV, however).
Amazon.com Video on demand features a variety of TV programs for free. Most rentals run from 99 cents to $3.99; movies can also be purchased for $9.99 and up.