Voddler closes down until March.

February 24th, 2010 by Jarmo Puskala

Just got an email from Voddler, the “Spotify for films”, that they will be closing down until March 8th. There are not too many users to be affected by this, but it’s a sign of some more interesting things to come:

Voddler was exposed to an attempted security breach. The Voddler Client, the media-player, was attacked and we take seriously to all offences towards Voddler, our members and the content. Therefore we have decided to close the service until the new website is launched.

The new Voddler will feature web-based movie-player, search tool and mouse control. With a completely web-based movie service Voddler is confident to be able to meet the ever-growing demand for a great selection of free and rentable movies in an accessible environment. The sparkling new Voddler service will not only satisfy the Swedish movie-viewers but the time has come to invite Norway, Denmark and Finland.

I got the invite couple of months ago, but haven’t really used the service except for testing. Even in the client form it was a promising service, way beyond any other VOD system in the Scandinavian countries: meaning it was actually possible to watch films with it! Actually, it was pleasant enought I can’t really complain. Most of the films were free with a couple of pre-roll ads before them. The selection wasn’t great and the new films were only available for rent, but all in all it was as nice as watching videos on a computer can be. I still prefer the sofa and tv, but that’s no fault of Voddler.

Now the coming Flash player should make things even more interesting. It will be interesting to see how tv channels react. My inner optimist is already thinking about the possibility of having a Scandinavian Hulu, but that’s probably too much to hope for. I’ll be happy if we get a VOD service that actually works.

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5 Responses to “Voddler closes down until March.”

  1. Kris says:

    “I still prefer the sofa and tv, but that’s no fault of Voddler.”

    Maybe they should be integrating this kind of service into DVD/HDD players and/or television sets? There are now some sets with YouTube, Flickr, Twitter etc integrated.

    The hardware manufacturers won’t care about what effect it has on the TV channels, because the TV channels generally don’t add anything to the manufacturers’ profits.

  2. I have to admit I never really thought anyone would want “Internet on their TV”, but I’m about to change my mind.

    A full-feature browser on every tv would probably be the best way to deliver VOD over the internet. Web-based players are pretty much the only way we’ll see cross-platform VOD services. And having a browser on your telly is probably the easiest and cheapest way to bridge the computer-sofa gap. Anything that would involve downloading files will end up burning in DRM hell :/

  3. I don’t think a normal web browser would really work. Or at least the web pages should be “TV optimised”. Using a normal web browser on a TV would be totally shite: fiddling with a mouse, trying to scroll around to find a link. Not nice (and yeah, I’ve done it).

    Again, I really don’t want to use a computer on my TV. I want to sit down and watch something.

  4. Angela says:

    I suppose I crossed the computer-sofa gap about 8 years ago when I bought a tv-card to connect telly to my pc and be able to actually watch foreign tv programs which would otherwise require me to buy a satellite dish. Nowadays, my tv is connected to a media-center to watch movies in digital format. If they can design their web-based player for use “full-screen” with simple commands/choices as dvd’s selection screen would be, and the hardware manufacture of modern dvd players with integrated internet support provided a button to open it automatically, I personally feel there would be a great potential to this.

    I think the critical factor would be the design of the player. One does not want to pick up a mouse to watch tv, or go mad typing web-addresses and searching tiny links on a big screen. Everything should be clear to navigate with the standard buttons on one’s remote control, else it will stay a toy for only the most technological-oriented users.