Its the end of 2018 and in a year dominated by Marvel superhero movies the DC Universe ends the year strong with Aquaman ending the year at the top.
Warner Bros. are finally enjoying the kins of figures for a superhero movie that Disney and Marvel have until now enjoyed and their origin movie holds onto the top spot with a Christmas weekend gross of $51 million.
This boosts the films total US gross to $188.7 million after 2 weeks of release, and gives hope to the DC Universe.
Sitting pretty at number 2 is Disneys sequel movie which takes a reasonable $28 million over the weekend which boosts its total gross to just under $100 million, it will reach this milestone next week.
The Transformers origin movie takes third place again this week with a weekend gross of $20 million which boosts the critically praised film to $66.7 million after 2 weeks.
The hit animation based on the Spider-Man comics drops to 4 this week and takes $18 million to push the film over the 100 million mark with $103 million after 3 weeks of release.
Finishing off the top 5 in the US this week is Clint Eastwoods latest film which takes $11.7 million to boost its US cume to $60 million.
Opening on Christmas day the critically acclaimed potential Oscar movie was the highest new film of the week at 6 with a debut of $7.8 million.
Also opening on Christmas day this critically panned film made its debut at 7 with $7.3 million.
America celebrates Halloween in style and the Hollywood studios embrace this aplenty and this week the American public flocked to see the new Saw movie Jigsaw.
Bringing in a relatively low, especially for an established series, $16.2 million Jigsaw hits the top during the season when people like to be scared.
Expect the film to sink down the charts quickly as if often the case with films that rely on seasonal attraction for its return.
Boo2! A Madea Halloween from Tyler Perry falls from the top on its second weekend to number 2 with a weekend take of $10 million.
This brings the films total gross to $35 million after 2 weeks of release, this followup is falling faster than the previous film which came out exactly a year ago.
Also new this week is Thank You For Your Service which enters the US box office at number 6 with a $3.7 million opening weekend.
Longest running and highest total grossing film this week is for another week IT, the film has now taken $323.7 in total grosses and been on the box office for 8 weeks, this week it sits at 10.
Animation aimed at a more adult audience lands at the top of the box office chart this week as Sausage Party makes its UK debut at number 1.
With lead vocals from Seth Rogan the innuendoes fly fas in this 15 rated comedy as its grosses a good, but not great, £2.6 million.
Finding Dory has had a fantastic run at the box office, 2 spells at the top but this week falls down to number 3.
Its not a sad story thought and an excellent 6th week gross of £1.5 million brongs the films total gross in the UK to a fantastic £38 million, it has not out grossed Finding Nemo in the UK.
Also making their debut on the box office chart this week are Brotherhood at number 2 with £1.9 million and Cafe Society at number 9 with £0.5 million.
Highest grossing film on the box office this week is Finding Dory and longest run is The BFG which has spent 7 weeks on the top 10.
Next week sees the release of Ben-Hur (a remake) and Captain Fantastic as well as Don't Breathe the current American number 1.
A year ago
Straight Outta Compton kept its grip at the top of the UK box office with No Escape the highest new film at 3.
Five years ago
The Inbetweeners Movie remained at the top and with a strong top 4 the highest new film was the Indian film Bodyguard at number 5.
Ten years ago
You, Me and Dupree remained at the top and with 3 new releases in the top 5 Little Man was the highest of them.
Fifteen years ago
Heath Ledger starred in A Knights Tale which made its debut at the top while Planet of The Apes fell to number 2 on its 3rd week.
Twenty years ago
There was no moving for Independence Day which kept its vice grip on the top while top new film Phenomenon landed at number 2.
Twenty five years ago
Mega hit Terminator 2: Judgment Day was still at the top of the box office while top new film Dying Young landed at number 3.
There was just one major release this week there which basically means there was inevitably going to be a new film making its debut at the top, and as predicted Warner Bros. Suicide Squad does just that.
Continuing the DC Cinematic Universe that was started in Man of Steel and Batman V Superman Dawn of Justice this film does something the Marvel/Disney have not yet dared, put the bad guys front and centre.
And audiences have lapped this up with Suicide Squad topping the UK box office with an excellent £11.2 million, nearly as big as the much more anticipated Batman V Superman from March.
That superhero movie sank quickly at the box office so we'll be watching things closely to see if it does similar.
Worth noting is that if the chart listing was taken over the whole week then Finding Dory would sit at the top with £12 million.
Highest total grossing on this weeks top 10 is The Secret Life of Pets which has now grossed over £32 million, while longest stay on the box office is The Angry Birds Movie with 11 weeks.
A year ago
The Fantastic Four reboot made its debut at the top of the box office knocking Mission:Impossible Rogue Nation down to number 2.
Five years ago
Four weeks in and Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2 was still number 1 leaving JJ Abrams Super 8 to debut at number 2.
Ten years ago
TV show turned movie Miami Vice made its debut at the top knocking Cars down to number 2.<> Fifteen years ago
Cats and Dogs made its debut a the top of the box office knocking Jurassic Park III from the top which fell to number 3.
Twenty years ago
Twister remained at the top for a second week leaving James and The Giant Peach to make its debut at number 2.
Twenty five years ago
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves was at top for another week while the top new film came in at number 2 in the shape of Backdraft.
Liam Neeson stars in the final of the Taken trilogy in the new film topping the sales charts in the UK this week.
Tak3n was released in UK cinemas on January 9th 2015 where it made its debut at the top of the box office with a very decent weekend gross of £6.7 million.
It remained at the top the following week and spend a total of 6 weeks on the top 15 making a sharp steady decline.
The film took a total of £17.4 million and is the 225th highest grossing film in the UK, in America is grossed $325 million and is the US 295th highest grosser of all time.
Kingsman The Secret Service falls just a single place to number 2 this week after a single week at the top.
Also new this week is: Football documentary Gascoigne about the famed footballing legend at number 4 and hard hitting drama Selma at number 10.
Kingsman The Secret Service, directed by Matthew Vaughn and starring Colin Firth, takes over at the top of the UK video chart this week on it's debut week of sales.
Kingsman The Secret Service was released in the UK on 30th January of 2015 where it entered the UK box office at number 2, heated to the top by Big Hero 6.
The film spent a successful 9 weeks on the official top 15, but was still floating around in some cinemas a couple of weeks ago and hence still taking box office grosses.
To date the film has grossed £16.5 million in the UK making it the 247th highest grossing film, wordwide it has grossed $403.3 million making it the 197th top grossing film worldwide.
Last weeks top film, American Sniper, falls just a single place this week to number 2.
Also new on the UK video charts this week are: Kajaki at number 7, controversial The Interview at number 8, Mortdecai at number 9 and Vice, starring Bruce Willis at number 19.
At the world box office this week Fast and Furious 7 is still street ahead of the crowd as it's gross for it's second weekend of release hits $255.5 million.
This now gives the film an $800 million world gross and it is certain to hit the $1 billion mark in the coming weeks.
Highest new film is The Longest Ride at number 5, a total weekend gross of $16.5 million from 29 territories, the film is yet to open in much of Europe.
2nd this week is Home with $34 million and 3rd is Cinderella with just shy of $20 million.
Wolf Warrior this week takes $18 million, still doing strong numbers at 4 despite only being released in China.
Here is the full World box office top 10 this week
Opening to a massive global gross of $384 million from the 64 countries it was released in, Furious 7 (or Fast and Furious 7 as it's called in some countries) made it's mark and out grossed the rest of the top 10 combined.
Home fell to second with $48 million while the live action version of Cinderella is still doing well grossing £34 million across the globe.
The Divergent Series Insurgent is at 4 with $25 million, and finishing off the top five is Wolf Warrior from director Jacky Wu which grossed $22 million from just a single territory.
Here is the current top 10 world grossing films:
Home is still the top film for the second week at the world box office.
Taking $78 million across the globe Home is proving to be a global smash hit, it has now grossed $102 million in total.
With Cinderella 2nd and The Divergent Series Insurgent 3rd the top new film is Get Hard, only released in 9 countries the film takes $39 million on it't debut.
Kingsman The Secret Service rounds out the top 5 films.
Here is the top ten:
The Divergent Series Insurgent opened up in 77 countries this last weekend and without too much of a challenge becomes the top film across the globe.
Taking a world grossing $101 million the film easily knocks Cinderella down to second place after a single week as the global top film.
New animated film Home is 3rd this week with a global gross of $19.2 million and Tak3n gets a new surge of life after opening in China and takes $18.6 million.
Finally on the top 5 this week is Lost and Love from China which takes $16.2 million from just 5 countries os release so far.
Here is the full top 10 global films this week
Cinderella not only dominated the North American box office this week is also went global taking in $132 million dollars in all territories.
The Kenneth Branagh film is yet to open in many countries but it did debut in 32, so expect it's stay to be much longer as it opens worldwide.
Inside the top 5 we have Kingsman The Secret Service is at 2 with Chappie at 3, Focus falls from the top to 4 and new at 5 is Run All Night which opened in 20 territories and opened to $17 million.
Here is the full worldwide top 10
Across the world box office this week Will Smith's starring vehicle Focus becomes the top film across the globe with a gross of $27 million.
It replaces Fifty Shades of Grey which has been at the top for the last couple of weeks, it falls to fifth with a gross of $23 million.
Chappie is the top new film of the week, a slither behind Focus with $27 million has it enter at number 2.
The rest of the top 5 has Jupiter Ascending at 3, thanks to a big opening in China, with $26 million and Kingsman The Secret Service at 4 with $25 million.
Here is the full top 10 film at the global box office
At the box office across the world this week Fifty Shades of Grey continues to reign as the highest grossing film.
It's third week of release has seen it gross $36 million, which brings it's global gross to $417 million.
With little in the way of new releases this week, Will Smith managed to get the top new film across the globe with Focus grossing $12.2 million.
Here is this weeks top 10 cinema films across the world
**Update 3rd March with top 10**
Will Smith is a con artist this week in Focus which makes it debuts at the top of the US box office charts, the actors first number 1 film since Men In Black 3 hit cinemas back in 2012. In a quiet week for the US box office Focus takes a very light $19.1 million dollars, only one Will Smith film has scored a lowed debut, The Legend of Bagger Vance from 2001.
The only other new film to make it's debut this week is The Lazarus Effect at 5
As expected Fifty Shades of Grey is starting to fall with quite a thump as it falls from the top to number 4 this week with a $10.9 million weekend gross, it's total stands at a none too bad $148 million.
The other films on the top 5 are Kingsman The Secret Service at 2, The Spongebob Movie Sponge Out of Water at 3.
Fifty Shades of Grey is dominating the box office chart across the world for a second weekend with a world gross of $68.1 million.
Kingsman The Secret Service is at number 2 but it's world gross is half that of Fifty Shades at $33 million.
The rest of the top 5 is rounded out with The Spongebob Movie, Dragon Blade and American Sniper.
It's another week at the top of the US box office chart for Fifty Shades of Grey despite there being a 72% decline in ticket sales on it's second weekend.
Taking a weekend gross of $23.2 million compared to the $85 million from the previous week, it still out did Kingsman The Secret Service which hold on in second place.
After 10 days of release Fifty Shades has now taken a US domestic gross of $130.1 million.
Highest new film of the week is Disney's McFarland, USA starring Kevin Costner which enters at number 4 with a weekend gross of $11.3 million.
Also new is The DUFF at number 5 which took $11.02 million from it's debut weekend.
Disappointingly Hot Tub Time Machine 2 could only manager a number 7 debut with $5.8 million.
It was all about Fifty Shades of Grey at the US box office this weekend, and no other film got a look in as the country went Mr Grey crazy.
Steam rolling the charts with the highest debut ever for a February release and the second highest debut for an R rated movie Fifty Shades took an incredible $93 million.
Nothing could stand the pace Grey set and last week top film The Spongebob Movie Sponge Out of Water falls down to number 3 this week, Kingsman The Secret Service enters at 2.
With such a strong film making it's debut this weekend no other studio dare go against it which means there are nothing else new on the chart other than those already mentioned.
Disney hold on to the top spot this week with their latest animated big screen movie Big Hero 6, and in a repeat of last week it only just out grosses Kingsman The Secret Service which holds at 2.
Another £2.5 million over the weekend sees the Hero 6's UK gross rise to £7.5 million from it's 11 days of release, including preview screenings.
Interestingly it was the weekend which gave Hero 6 the top spot, looking at the chart for the full week, Kingsman takes the top spot by nearly a million pound.
Highest new film of the week is from the Aardman animated studio, Shaun The Sheep Movie enters at number 4.
Shaun takes ££2 million for the weekend, not the numbers that Wallace and Gromit are used to but it's up there with other Aardman films.
Also new on the UK box office are: Jupiter Ascending from the Wachowski siblings at 4 and Selma at number 6.
Historical box office
A year ago
Mr. Peabody and Sherman entered the box office at the top on it's debut weekend of release knocking The Wolf of Wall Street from the top to number 3.
Five years ago
Avatar retained the top spot for yet another week, The Princess and The Frog from the mouse house was the highest new film at 2.
Ten years ago
Meet The Fockers stayed at the top for another week leaving Ocean's Twelve to land on the box office at number 2 on it's debut.
Fifteen and Twenty years ago
Oscar winner American Beauty was still at the top of the box office fifteen years ago while twenty years ago the controversial Natural Born Killers was the top film in the country.
All change at the top this week as Disney take over with their animated blockbuster Big Hero 6 making it's debut.
Like it's predecessor from the Mouse House Big Hero 6 makes it's debut at the top of the box office, and like Frozen which debuted with £4.7 million Big Hero 6 takes takes £4.2.
The release is just before the Uk school half term holiday which will see a massive boost in it's takings, and although it will do well it wont do as well as the juggernaut that has been Frozen.
Falling from the top spot this week is American Sniper which is this week at 3 and a total gross just shy of £10 million.
Making it's debut at 2, and only why of the top spot by £50,000, is Kingsman The Secret Service.
Other new films this week are: Inherent Vice at 9 and Les Contes Dhoffmann Met Opera 2015 at 10.
A year ago
The Wolf of Wall Street was holding onto the top spot for another week while the highest new film was That Awkward Moment which came in at 3.
Five years ago
There was still no move for Avatar as it held onto the top spot while the highest new film was Mel Gibsons try at a comeback movie in Edge of Darkness at 3.
Ten years ago
Meet The Fockers was the highest new film which debuted at the top of the box office knocking Closer down to the runner up spot.
Fifteen years ago
Double Jeopardy made it's debut at the top of the chart knocking Angelas Ashes down to the number 2 spot.
The company was started in the US in 1997 specialising in mailing DVD's to it's customers rather than having them go to a Video Shop to rent them, utilising the internet it revolutionised the industry and was the first nail in the Blockbuster coffin. Today the company still deals with mail order but also does big business with streaming video, and from today the service has come to Britain, over 10 years later!
Does the UK need Netflix? LoveFilm has no strong competition, so in the mail order sector, but streaming/downloaded video, maybe not. I can stream films from my PS3, my Xbox 360, my iTunes account, my Apple TV (OK technically thats through iTunes as well), my TV itself, even Blockbuster if I so choose, so Netflix I think is 10 years late.
So why launch Netflix now? It has the brand recognition, despite it being US only many many UK people know the name, in fact many probably thought the service was already available in the UK. Netflix are also a massive company making billions of dollars a year, expansion was only a matter of time.
I remember working for the biggest video rental company in Britain many years ago, the company was called Ritz Video Film Hire, Blockbuster Video had been trying to crack the UK for a couple of years, they were a massive American company at the time and thought they could bring the American business model to the UK, it didn't work and Blockbuster Video was failing, so what did they do? They bought Ritz Video Film Hire and overnight the staff who had grown to hate Blockbuster were suddenly working for them, I know LoveFilm is owned by Amazon.co.uk but I can seriously see them selling to Netflix sometime down the line.At the end of the day as long as the customer wins who cares? Already LoveFilm have reduced their prices by a pound, but LoveFilm don't offer HD yet, Netflix had that advantage for the extra pound. I'm going to sound off now, I know these services are good value, £4.99 or £5.99 for unlimited streaming films is very good, but, this thing that annoys me is they don't have the latest releases, I want to see film when they are out on DVD/Blu-ray, not weeks later, I'd even pay a pound or 2 extra so i could stream Breaking Dawn Part 1 from the day it's released, I wont get that yet with Netflix or LoveFilm, for that I'd need to stick iTunes, PS3 etc.
I'm sure these services will get there, and for rental at least the future is in digital distribution, but for me Netflix isn't there yet, but still it is a welcome addition that I may use when they get same day as disk releases.
Miramax have launch an app for Facebook which allows you to watch a number of their films on the social networking site at a cost of 30 Facebook Credits ($3 or about £2.60) per rental.
The films are streamed so there is no downloading involved, and can also be watched full screen on your computer, iPad or a GoogleTV device (finally a use for the Google set top box.
The streaming is good and the definition is of a good quality. Naturally there is a social aspect to it all and you can arrange to watch films with friends if you desire and there is a game in the app as well based around casting and your friends list.
There are 20 movies available in the US, there are some movies available in the UK but not all 20. Like other online rentals the films are available for 30 days and then 48 hours after you start watching.
Check out the app on the Miramax section of the Facebook website.
Go back just over a year and the biggest film in the world (by box office gross) had been established, that film was James Cameron's Avatar, a film built from the ground up to show what 3D can achieve.
This weekend in the US Cars 2 has hit the top spot with a weekend gross of $68 million of which only 40% of that take was from 3D screening, so is the public finally realisd that 3D is just a gimmick?
If you listen to Sony they would have you believe that 3D is the future, we'll be watching all out broadcast TV and home movies in 3D, Nintendo are another company who have invested a lot of money in 3D, producing the 3DS, there is certainly no shortage of temptation for us to embrace the 3D age.
Not lets look at the numbers, Cars 2 isn't a first, King Fu Panda 2 and Rio both took more money in 2D rather than 3D, and most people who saw Pixar's top grossing film last year Toy Story 3 seemed to agree that the 3D did nothing for the film. In Japan the 3DS has been struggling, being outsold by the 7 year old PSP, a device for which the successor has already been announced and is reducing in sales.
Is there a future for 3D? Who knows at the moment, but 3D is starting to show it's colours at the cinema, the surcharge on the glasses certainly cant be helping, Sky TV are struggling with the uptake of 3D subscribers, again there is a surcharge, and gamers seem to be rejecting the notion as well.
There are a couple of high profile catalogue 3D film that have been retrofitted with 3D, the Star Wars Saga and Titanic, this may well be a test as to how the public is embracing 3D, but on current evidence we don't want it, the novelty has warn off.
This is an odd one, Amazon is all set to buy LOVEFiLM, a move Amazon is making to get ahead in the European market of DVD/Blu-ray/online streaming services before the American giant Netflix gets a chance. But why is it an odd move?
There have been a number of online postal rental movie services in the UK from Screen Select to LOVEFiLM of which LOVEFiLM has eventually become the biggest, mainly by acquiring all the others, although in reality LOVEFiLM is actually Screen Select, when the merger of the two companies happened the Screen Select management team stayed in place with their systems but they thought the LOVEFiLM name was better.
Included in the many companies that offered online postal DVD rentals was Amazon, a service which was very good, much better than LOVEFiLM, but after only a couple of years LOVEFiLM bought the rental only service from Amazon, but Amazon became a major stakeholder in LOVEFiLM.
Now the whole story has gone full circle and Amazon will own the company outright, what I would like to see is the service integrated back into the Amazon website.
Amazon are making the right move, LOVEFiLM is now streaming on the PS3 and before long I can see it happening on many other devices, Apple TV maybe, Freeview HD boxes, and the killer, directly to TV's, Sony produce a lot of TV's and the relationship is already in play through the PS3.
It's a smart move for Amazon and one, which I am sure, will finally put the old high street movie rental stores into history, sorry Blockbuster we will remember you fondly but I think your time is up.
The Star Wars announcement at CES 2011 yesterday was that the Saga would be released on Blu-ray in September of this year , no exact date was given but the 3 box set's that will be released are available for pre-order now.
In what was considered a relatively low key event for such a huge announcement involved Darth Vader, a handful of Stormtroopers and Fox Home Entertainment president Mike Dunn coming out and making a short statement.
The 3 box sets that will be released are an Original Trilogy Box Set, a Prequels Trilogy Box Set and a 9 disk Saga Box set that will include 3 diska with over 30 hours of extra material, of which there was no mention of content.
Thankfully there was no mention of any Star Wars 3D, it's no secret that Lucas is working on a retrofit for the films but maybe that will be a separate release and this one will not be effected, it's a long time till September though. Also no mention of the Star Wars Holiday Special, we can live in hope that this will be cleaned, converted to HD and included.
The film are available on Amazon.co.uk with current prices at £33.99 for the two trilogy sets and £69.99 for the Saga set.
There was a press release to follow which gave far more information
THE FORCE IS STRONG WITH THIS ONE
THE MOST ANTICIPATED BLU-RAY RELEASE IN THE GALAXY
IS NOW AVAILABLE FOR WORLDWIDE PRE-ORDER STARTING TODAY
LAS VEGAS (Jan. 6, 2011) – The most anticipated Blu-ray release ever – the Star Wars™ Saga – emerges from light speed this September 2011. For the first time, all six of George Lucas' epic films (Episodes I-VI) are united in one complete set. Fans worldwide are able to pre-order now with online retailers.
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment will release Star Wars in three distinct sets to meet the needs of every Star Wars fan:
- Star Wars: The Complete Saga on Blu-ray (9-disc Set includes all six films)
- Star Wars: Prequel Blu-ray Trilogy (3-disc set includes Episodes I-III)
- Star Wars: Original Blu-ray Trilogy (3-disc set includes Episodes IV-VI)
STAR WARS: THE COMPLETE SAGA ON BLU-RAY will feature all six live-action Star Wars feature films utilizing the highest possible picture and audio presentation, along with three additional discs and more than 30 hours of extensive special features including never-before-seen deleted and alternate scenes, an exploration of the exclusive Star Wars archives, and much more.
Star Wars: The Complete Saga on Blu-ray will be available for $139.99 US/$179.99 CAN and the Star Wars: Trilogy Sets for $69.99 US/89.99 CAN. Pricing for each set will vary by international territory.
Flanked by a legion of his finest Imperial Stormtroopers, Darth Vader himself joined Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment President Mike Dunn at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) to announce the release, vowing “The forces of the Empire will be at your disposal to assure the success of this endeavor.''
“The Star Wars Saga is the most anticipated Blu-ray collection since the launch of the high-def format,” Dunn said. “The epic franchise pioneered sound and visual presentation in theaters and is perfectly suited to do it again in the home, with a viewing experience only possible with Blu-ray.”
“With all six episodes available for the first time in one collection, this is a great way for families and home audiences to experience the complete Saga from start to finish,” said Doug Yates, Vice President of Marketing, Online, Distribution, Lucasfilm Ltd. “And with the quality of high-definition, Blu-ray provides the most immersive home experience possible.”
“The Star Wars franchise has been one of the most anticipated Blu-ray releases by Amazon's customers,” said Bill Carr, Vice President of Music and Video at Amazon. “We think that Star Wars will be incredibly popular with our customers, and we expect pre-orders to be very strong.”
Sony and online DVD/Blu-ray rental company Lovefilm have today announced that it will be delivering movies via the internet to owners of Sony internet TV's.
In the same week that bricks and mortar video rental company Blockbuster announce that unless they have an injection of cash they will go bankrupt, one of the more successful online rental companies announce a deal that could amount to the final nail in the video shop coffin.
Movie rentals via the likes of the Playstation Network via a Playstation 3 or XBox Live via an XBox 360 have been with us for a while and proved successful, the internet TV delivers is in essence an extenuation of this.
Samsung are also in negations to offer a similar service and as people replace their TV's the replacement will most likely be internet enabled allowing the service to grow in time.
Is this another example of the physical media being a thing of the past, in the future will our film collection be in the "cloud" and we stream the movie when we want to watch it, will our film collections be Lovefilms catalogue?
I personally still like the idea of physical media, it's still fun and exciting, maybe I'm just an old fossil that needs to accept the future?
Whatever happens it looks like the video shop is going to be a thing of the past, no-one knows this more that Blockbuster Video the once king of the rental market who didn't move with the times and will go bust by the end of the year. As a former employee of the company I cant help but feel sad about that.
It's still only January and possible the most hyped device of the year has made it's debut today (Wednesday 27th January) as Apple CEO Steve Jobs announces the release of the iPad, an oversized iPod touch, the device can play HD (720p) video.
The new iPad is running a version of the software that runs the iPhone (which also powers the iPod touch) which means this new device isn't a traditional computer and is unable to do multi-tasking or run OSX applications, but it does have a media player which when coupled with the iTunes store you can buy and rent movies that can be watched anywhere you take it, like on holiday or in the car or on a plane.
The device is very light and thin and has a 9.7 inch screen, so unlike the small 3 inch screen on the iPhone/iPod Touch watching films, or any other task the device is capable of, should be much less strain on your various body parts.
There are two other things which have sold this device for me, one is a fantastic looking case that when the lid is flipped over becomes a stand, so if you are sitting on a chair you can just pop the thing on a table and you have a stand and hey presto comfort (see picture for illustration). Next is the price, although no UK or European price has been announced the US price for the low end model of 16GB is $499, so maybe about £400 - £500 in real money, that's a bargain.
No release date for UK yet but US has 60 - 90 days to wait, so maybe get that pal in America to send one over for you.
Check out Apples website for more info.
CES (Consumer Electronics Show) 2010 is kicking off in Las Vegas tomorrow with the Microsoft CEO (Steve Balmer at the moment) being the traditional first Keynote speaker at 6.30pm (PST) on 6th January.
The show always gives a good showcase as what we can expect in the future of technology from the likes of Sony, Samsung, LG, Panasonic and other manufacturers of home entertainment equipment with TV's and film media always having a good showing.
This year Blu-ray and high definition is expected to have a show as the format goes from strength to strength in sales and knocks on the door of DVD in a similar fashion to DBD to VHS 10 years ago.
TV's are on the dawn of a new technology going mainstream, althoug hseen last year OLED is expected to make a bog splash this year. OLED screens are very think and light and give better definition pictures to that of either LCD or plasma, the prices are falling and sizes coming up, expect many TV's PC monitors and other screen devices to be announced.
3D movies made a big impact in cinemas is 2009, and with Avatar doing so well at the box office at the moment studios are keen to push the idea into the home and it's thought that there will be a big display of 3D home movies and TV on display although the technology is new. 3D does have it's doubters who think it's a gimmick and will not catch on.
Also set to make a big impact at CES is tablet PC's, it is widely thought that Apple are on the verge of a big tablet announcement, although we will most likely have to wait until the end of January for that, but there are others who want to enter this market. Tablet PC's could mark a change to the way people view movies on the go, and with Windows 7 touch technology being so good, and probably the excellent iPhone OS being on any Apple device which will allow apps to run on it we could be at the dawn of something big for mobile movies, and in HD of course. Whatever the show has to offer it's always interesting to see what we may have in our homes in the coming years, and what new development in the pipeline, you can follow some of the best coverage, like me, at these site.
Apple and their iTunes store has in recent years become a hot spot for renting and buying movies, mainly for playing on your portable device (iPhone or iPod Touch recommended) but these can with the right hardware be played on the TV.
Today is the start of the Apple WWDC, which traditionally kick off with a huge presentation from Apple where they announce lots of new hardware and software.
Out of all this high tech announcement came a small nugget which went almost unmissed about the new iPhone 3.0 software, Apple are introducing to their mobile iTunes store the ability to buy or rent films.
Imagine the scenario, you‚Äôre on a long car journey, or about to board a plane and you want a god movie for the journey, well soon you‚Äôll be able to get our iPhone wherever you are and buy a movie for the journey.
No great shakes but a nice addition to the mobile device.
I have to admit that I have used and enjoyed the Xbox 360 Live movie rentals of a number of occasions and enjoyed the service, my only issue being the download time to get the film.
When renting a standard def movie the download time isn't all that bad, but download a high Def movie and forget it, especially over wireless, I'm talking days even not hours, and that's only 720?
In their E3 conference yesterday Microsoft announced that they would be changing the system soon to have 1080p high def movies, not you may be thing that would take weeks to download, but no, Microsoft are going to off instantly available movies.
No work yet on pricing or exact availability, or if this will be good over wireless as I'm sure many users will have on their Xbox, but this could be the start of something good for movie rentals, this country needs it with the lack of a good rental service available.
We all agree that the PSP is a smart little device and watching film on it can he handy for when your away from home, like on holiday. At the moment the only way to watch films is on UMD or by cracking the DVD and putting the film on a memory stick.
Sony have now revealed plans to release some films on Blu-ray what also includes a version encoded and shrunk to it fits on a memory stick, and more to the point is legal.
This is a very interesting experiment and its good to see that Sony is trying different ways of getting people using the PSP as more than a gaming device.
I hope that the compression brings the file size down enough that you can fit a couple of movies on a 1gb memory stick, although carrying 5 memory stick is certainly preferable to 5 UMD, and they can be reused.
I don‚Äôt think Sony are going to abandon movies on the UMD format just yet but it's the first sign and with a PSP2 inevitable at some point possible in the next few years maybe it will be UMD free.
It is of course another reason to go the Blu-ray route rather than HD-DVD and another sign that HD-DVD really has no way back.
Let me know your thought below.
As soon as CES started and Warner Bros. confirmed that they are going Blu-ray only we all knew it was only a matter of time before there would be only one format and this "war" would be over, and now it looks like Toshiba will announce their withdrawal from HD-DVD.
This speculation along with the Warner announcement and the many US retailers announcing either Blu-ray exclusivity or Blu-ray dominance in stores are enough to kill the format, who wants to buy a player that has little retail support.
Blu-ray is the winner and it's only a matter of days (if not hours) before it will become official. This is one in the eye for Microsoft who has reportedly pumped millions of dollars into support for the format and a big triumph for Sony who developed it.
The conspiracy around the Microsoft involvement is multilayer, but whatever the truth is I think that downloadable content for films and TV has taken a hit in the back of this move as well, people can buy a player with confidence now.
The good news for Sony now is their insistence of putting a Blu-ray player in the Playstation 3 might pay off, the gaming device is still by far one of the better players on the market and is still the cheapest certainly in the European market where the stand alone players are still not that common.
The players are sure to come down in price now and the HD-DVD format will slowly start to disappear off the shelves, for those that did buy an HD-DVD player you will soon be able to pick up the movies very cheap.
There is a bit of controversy circulating around the internet that early adopters of blu-ray disks will lack features of future Blu-ray disks, and although this is true some claims are being made that the early players will not play future disks.
Although the former statement is true, feature on some future disks will not be accessible on certain players, the latter is simply not true.
Lets put this into context, Blu-ray players have a profile, 1.0, 1.1 and in the near future 2.0. Features are categorised in these profiles so for example picture in picture on future disks are part of profile 1.1. If you have an early player that is only capable of 1.0 you will be able to play a 1.1 disk and get the full experience but you wont be able to access the picture in picture feature.
What impact does this have on the current blu-ray player owners? It seems for a majority it will have little impact. One of the reasons why early players are not future proof is that they cannot connect to the internet and so cant be upgraded, this is where the most popular Blu-ray player sold to date has the advantage.
By quite a large margin the best selling player with the largest install base is the Playstation 3 and this is a wireless device which connects to the internet no problem and has already been upgraded to profile 1.1 and the upgrade to 2.0 is just around the corner.
Good news in all this is that one of the standards being introduced for profile 2.0 is the ability to connect to the internet which means that any future upgrades wont be a problem.
If you have been a little bit of an early adopter and you bought a player after November last year then you are probably already set and any player bought then or after that date had to be at least profile 1.1. If you bought one before then just remember you can still watch the film without any loss of picture.
Early adopter generally know that by being the first person on the street to have the latest technology they will probably have an out dated device quicker than the guy next door who waited 2 years before taking the plunge.
The film has a US gross of $35,936,486 and is the 2032th top US domestic film.