So many companies are trying to join the streaming bandwagon, even those who have little to no connection with movies, such as Walmart, for example.
Which is why it's a bit refreshing to see that the latest newcomer in the streaming space is none other than the Internet Movie Database, better known as IMDb, one of the most popular websites for all things movies and TV.
The company has now launched Freedive, a free video streaming service supported by periodic ad breaks. The films and TV shows are available to all registered IMDb or Amazon users, in addition to Amazon Fire TV owners. Amazon, by the way, owns IMDb.
The biggest difference between Freedive and most other video streaming platforms is that it's free. Netflix and Amazon Video both offer monthly subscription fees for ad-free watching, but Freedive touts a cache of excellent movies free of charge for those willing to sit through occasional promotions.
IMDb isn't the first company to experiment with offering ad-supported content for free. YouTube became the first big player in this space when it announced at the end of last year that it would stream a number of movies for free.
The only downside with Freedive is it doesn't offer all movies and TV shows found on Amazon Video, but nearly all the movies and shows currently being offered are among the most noteworthy. There, viewers can watch acclaimed titles such as Foxcatcher, Memento, Monster, Run Lola Run, The Illusionist, The Last Samurai, and True Romance, to name a few. Shows including Fringe, Heroes, The Bachelor, and a bunch of others are also available for everyone's binge-watching pleasure.
Everyone living in the United States, that is. Freedive is only available stateside, unfortunately. IMDb has yet to confirm whether the service will eventually hit other countries down the line, but given the complexities involved in content licensing, the odds of that happening are low.
Capturing A Market Share
In any case, IMDb believes Freedive will allow it to capture a share in the streaming market because it has millions of visitors. A representative failed to say how many films and shows are available, only stating that there are "hundreds." More will be added going forward.
"Customers already rely on IMDb to discover movies and TV shows and decide what to watch," said Col Needham, IMDb's founder and chief executive. "We will continue to enhance IMDb Freedive based on customer feedback and will soon make it available more widely, including on IMDb's leading mobile apps."