Walt Disney, Co. has announced a partnership with Google that lets users purchase their favorite Disney movies from the Play Store and watch it on their Android phones or tablets or their iOS devices.

Hollywood has long been trying to convince Google and Apple that restricting films and other types of digital content to users of their own platforms discourages people from spending their money on digital goods, since they do not want to spend their dollars on a single movie twice to be able to watch it on their Android and iOS devices.

Disney has changed all that. Now, users can watch more than 400 movies from Disney, Pixar and Marvel studios using any device but using only a single Disney account.

The bridge-building move means users can purchase Frozen from the Google Play Store and watch it later on their iPad using their Disney Movies Anywhere app for iOS, which links to both their Google and Apple accounts. They will also be able to view which movies they bought by opening Disney Movies Anywhere on whichever device, regardless of whether they purchased the movie from Google Play Store or Apple's App Store.

Until Nov. 4, both companies had tied up their users to their own ecosystems, allowing them to watch all the movies they want but only on devices that run on their own platforms. However, the partnership with Disney is a first and will go down in the history of downloadable movies.

"This is about getting people comfortable with building their digital movies collection," says Jamie Voris, chief technology officer at Disney. "Disney is going to protect them and make sure they can watch their movies the way they want to."

Disney is the only major film studio in Hollywood that is not part of Ultraviolet, a coalition of entertainment and technology companies whose purpose is to build a cloud-based digital rights management system that allows users to create their own movie library online.

While companies such as Microsoft, Sony and Time Warner's Warner Bros. have signed up to be part of the coalition, Apple and Google have not. However, despite its roster of prominent members, Ultraviolet has so far failed to persuade the two major companies to work with the coalition.

"The approach Ultraviolet has taken relative to the approach Disney Movies Anywhere has taken is slightly different," says Google Play Movies head of partnerships Jonathan Zepp. "[Disney's] was the one we felt was the right path for us to move forward with right now."

Users who sign up to Disney Movies Anywhere via Google Play Store will receive a free digital copy of "Wreck-It Ralph."

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