Smart Screen

CES 2019: FandangoNOW Adds IMAX Films; Samsung, Apple Partner Up

VOD service FandangoNOW will be the first U.S. digital retailer to land IMAX Enhanced films for sale directly to the home, the companies announced at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). The deal will give FandangoNOW exclusive rights to the IMAX films, which are 4K and HDR enabled, through 2019. FandangoNOW will begin offering the IMAX Enhanced movies later this year.

“FandangoNOW prides itself in offering consumers the highest quality image and widest catalogue of premium format movies to enjoy on demand,” said Cameron Douglas, head of FandangoNOW. “We are thrilled to be collaborating with IMAX … to serve as the exclusive digital retailer in the U.S. for IMAX Enhanced content releasing later this year, helping consumers access premium 4K HDR content as the filmmaker intended in the home.”

Already, several companies are supporting the IMAX Enhanced initiative, including both Sony Electronics and Sony Pictures, along with Paramount Pictures and Sound United, the parent company of Denon and Marantz., including big studio titles and IMAX documentaries.

“For decades, Fandango has helped millions of movie fans enjoy IMAX movies on giant screens by creating innovative movie discovery and ticketing services using next generation online, mobile and voice technologies,” said Geir Skaaden, EVP, chief products and services officer at Xperi Corporation, parent company of DTS, which working with IMAX for the films. “Now, with the company’s video on-demand service FandangoNOW and its support of IMAX Enhanced films, Fandango can help deliver to fans a level of quality never before experienced at home.”

Also in the early going at CES 2019, Samsung announced that its next line-up of smart TVs with include support for iTunes movies and TV shows, along with support for Apple AirPlay 2. That partnership marks a first for Apple, which rarely partners with other hardware companies, and has never allowed a manufacturer to launch an Apple app.

The iTunes app will appear on Samsung smart TVs in more than 100 countries this spring, and will also be available via a firmware update on 2018 TV models.

“We pride ourselves on working with top industry leaders to deliver the widest range of content services to our Smart TV platform,” said Won-Jin Lee, EVP of service, Business of Visual Display, for Samsung Electronics. “Bringing more content, value and open platform functionality to Samsung TV owners and Apple customers through iTunes and AirPlay is ideal for everyone.”

“We look forward to bringing the iTunes and AirPlay 2 experience to even more customers around the world through Samsung Smart TVs, so iPhone, iPad and Mac users have yet another way to enjoy all their favorite content on the biggest screen in their home,” said Eddy Cue, SVP of internet software and services at Apple.

Samsung also used CES to launch its modular MicroLED display technology, including a new, 75-inch display.

“For decades, Samsung has led the way in next-generation display innovation,” said Jonghee Han, president of Visual Display Business for Samsung Electronics. “Our Micro LED technology is at the forefront of the next screen revolution with intelligent, customizable displays that excel in every performance category. Samsung Micro LED has no boundaries, only endless possibilities.”