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Disney to close its online movie service

November 19, 2012|By Dawn C. Chmielewski
  • "John Carter" is one of the movies currently promoted on Disney Movies Online, a service that will end Dec. 31.
"John Carter" is one of the movies currently promoted on Disney… (Frank Connor / Disney )

Disney is shutting down its Disney Movies Online service, which failed to catch on with users.

The site let consumers buy or rent digital versions of Disney and Pixar films and watch the movies on their computers. It was designed to ease the family entertainment company's mainstream consumers from the physical to the digital world. 

But the service had many limitations. Movies could be viewed through a Web browser, but not downloaded for playback.  Disney Movies Online also was incompatible with such Internet-connected devices as game consoles. 

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"Disney Movies Online does not have the flexibility that many users today demand," the company admitted in a statement. "We made a business decision to close the service until we are able to provide the greatest value and experience to our customers."

Disney told its users the service will close Dec. 31.  Customers who purchased a Disney Combo pack with Digital Copy can transfer this copy to either iTunes or Windows Media Player. 

The entertainment giant plans to launch a service called Disney Movies Anywhere, which would allow users to access their content across devices.  No launch date has been announced.

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