Google brings movies to local Play store

Rates for movie rentals start from $3.98.
Rates for movie rentals start from $3.98. PHOTO: AFP

SINGAPORE - Android fans rejoice. Google has finally rolled out movies for sale and rent on the local Play Store.

The company did not specify the total number of titles available, but noted that that there were "thousands of high-def, full-length feature films from major Hollywood studios".

Rates for movie rentals start from $3.98, though some newer titles, such as Fifty Shades of Grey and Kingsman: The Secret Service, are available for $4.98 each.

Users have 30 days to begin watching rented titles, and 48 hours to finish watching a movie once it plays.

Movies available for sale start from $12.98 for most titles, while popular ones are priced from $19.98 for standard-definition, and $24.98 for high-definition ones.

Titles are listed by categories but the local service only contains movies, whereas the Play store in the United States offers TV shows as well.

This move to offer movies comes three years after competitor Apple started offering movies in the local iTunes store in 2012. Apple has not revealed the number of movies available in the local store either. It also does not offer TV shows here.

The initial roll-out by iTunes then included the availability of R21 titles such as The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. This was against the rules set by the Media Development Authority, as only titles with ratings of up to M18 can be made available for sale to the public.

Not all the movies available on Google's movie store have ratings listed. While Fifty Shades of Grey is listed as M18, the listing of Kingsman: The Secret Service did not have a rating listed, even though the theatrical version has an M18 rating.

Movies such as Fast & Furious 7 and Taken 3 had no ratings listed either.

sherwinl@sph.com.sg