Looking for the best place to buy movies online?
Whether you like it or not, hard copies of movies are a dying breed and the easiest way to enjoy the best (and worst) of cinema is to digitize and buy movies online. Sure, many of the best streaming TV services (opens in a new tab) and the best streaming movie sites offer movie rentals, but they also have a habit of changing their catalog without notice. this often leads to the upsetting experience of discovering that the tense, plot-driven spy thriller you enjoyed a few months ago has disappeared just when you wanted to watch it again.
Now, if you’re going to fight the digital revolution to the bitter end, don’t worry, we’ve got some great tips for choosing the best blu-ray players (opens in a new tab). But if you want a digital movie that you can buy and keep forever to enjoy on your TV, smartphone, or one of the best (opens in a new tab) tablets of 2020, where should you go? We’ve taken a look at five great places to buy digital movies and listed them below, along with some pros and cons of each.
1. amazon prime video
Amazon video services can be a bit confusing. For example, users can purchase movies digitally through Amazon Prime Video regardless of whether or not they subscribe to Amazon Prime.
Once you understand this, Amazon Prime Video offers a wide selection of movies, including the latest blockbusters, and offers apps for smart TVs, tablets, smartphones, and game consoles along with your own streaming device.
Amazon is no newbie when it comes to storage and servers, so it’s unlikely you’ll have any issues getting a movie purchase delivered to your chosen device for viewing online or offline. On the downside, some of the app’s interfaces can be less intuitive compared to its Apple and Google peers, and there’s no download option for PC or Mac.
pros: great selection of movies; stable and reliable; broad compatibility cons: no download option for pc or mac
- find the selection on amazon prime video (opens in a new tab)
google play offers a wide variety of movies that can be played on an equally wide variety of devices. You can stream Google Play on any Android device, as well as your PC, Roku, Smart TV, and even iPhones or iPads. If your game console has a youtube app, you can use that too, as all google play rentals and purchases can be played through youtube.
You’ll need a google account to stream or download purchases and pricing is pretty much in line with other services across the board.
pros: great variety of movies; can be viewed on a wide variety of devices and platforms disadvantages: currently no offline downloads for desktop or laptop
- explore the selection on google play (opens in a new tab)
Although not as well known as Google Play or Apple iTunes, Vudu has been around for 10 years and is owned by retail giants Walmart. therefore, your credentials are solid. Like its more famous peers, it offers digital movies for rent and purchase in SD, HD, and a limited number in 4K. they also offer their own hdx format, which is slightly better than hd.
Vudu boasts an incredibly wide range of compatible devices with a list that includes iOS, Android, game consoles, and some smart TVs to boot. Another cool feature is the ability to download purchased movies to laptops and desktops.
pros: view from virtually anywhere on almost everything; no monthly subscription; ‘free with ads’ option for some movies cons: price is a bit higher
- explore the selection in vudu (opens in a new tab)
4. apple itunes
If you have an iPhone or iPad, then it makes sense to make iTunes your first port of call when looking to buy movies online. In addition to working seamlessly with your entire Apple Kit, you can also access other subscription services, like Hulu and HBO, through the Apple TV app. All purchased movies can be downloaded for offline viewing on iPhone, iPad, Mac and even PC.
the catch comes if you want to see your purchases on anything other than an apple product or via itunes on pc. There is an apple tv channel available on roku that plays your itunes purchases but, beyond that, you won’t be able to watch your movies on other devices. this means that if you want to migrate to another operating system, you will have to leave your movie collection behind.
pros: easy to use with great stability; large selection of movies cons: limited to apple and itunes products
- explore the selection on appletv (opens in a new tab)
While everyone knows that YouTube is a great place to find videos of adorably cute cats and humans hilariously hurting themselves, fewer people know that it also offers movies to rent and buy.
While their catalog doesn’t rival that of the other services mentioned here, they do offer some decent titles in sd, hd and even some 4k. a great advantage is that you can see them on any device that has an internet connection, as long as you have a google account to make the purchase. It’s also worth knowing that any purchases you make through YouTube will appear on Google Play (and vice versa).
pros: available on any device with an internet connection cons: not as large a catalog as other options; rental and purchase options are unclear on some devices
buy movies from your cable provider
Many cable companies offer movie rentals and purchases as part of the package, and while it can be easy and convenient to purchase movies this way, we wouldn’t necessarily recommend it, as you won’t be able to make purchases with should you switch providers.