TalkTalk turns it off TalkTalk TV Storepreventing customers from accessing digital movies they had previously purchased, raising a new wave of concerns about what it really means to “own” a digital movie.
In the digital age where streaming services are quickly eclipsing DVD collections, the idea of owning content has become increasingly complex.
The TalkTalk TV Store stopped new purchases in 2021, but allowed users to continue enjoying already purchased content.
However, this guarantee has now been voided, as customers have been notified that the store will be closed completely October 31, 2023 – And users who own movies on the platform should watch them until then, before they are lost forever.
It is important to note that this closure will not impact TalkTalk’s existing TV streaming platform (see more details below).
However, the upcoming closure of the VOD store is a first reported by Movie storiessparked a broader discussion about what ownership really means in the age of digital streaming.
Rocky’s Journey in the TalkTalk TV store
TalkTalk’s venture with the digital video on demand (VOD) store has had its share of ups and downs.
After the previous version of the store (known as Blinkbox (owned by Tesco) in 2018, and the addresses of some non-TalkTalk customers were moved to Rakuten (which also offers VOD rentals and purchases) — a courtesy that wasn’t extended this time around.
Instead, a compensation plan has been put in place, although some clients find that it appears to be non-existent.
The exact details of the compensation are unclear, but one user, on the TalkTalk community forums, reported that he was offered £25, which he claims is less than the total value of the films he purchased.
Additionally, some users claim that they were told that compensation depended on whether or not they had recently watched their owned movies.
The official comment provided to Cord Busters from a TalkTalk spokesperson refutes this, and confirms the company’s attempt to find a solution for all affected customers:
“We have created a path to resolve the issue for all customers regardless of whether they have viewed their content and contacted them directly.”
However, the somewhat ambiguous nature of the compensation and the sudden loss of access to owned content has left many people dissatisfied.
The TalkTalk TV Store, once a vibrant digital marketplace for movie fans, has become little more than a viewing platform for previously purchased content in the past couple of years.
With less than a hundred people affected by this closure, according to the TalkTalk website, the impact may seem small, but the repercussions are significant in the digital sphere.
TalkTalk Community Forums It is filled with dissatisfied customers expressing their frustration over the closure of the TV store.
The disappointment is palpable as users face the reality of losing access to their digital movie collections. The compensation offered, according to some, does not cover the monetary and emotional investment made over the years.
The illusion of digital ownership
The TalkTalk situation is a clear example of a much larger issue – the uncertain nature of digital ownership.
Unlike physical DVDs or Blu-ray discs, digital purchases depend on the stability of the platform and terms of service. When you purchase a digital copy of a movie, you are essentially getting a license to view the content, not owning the content itself.
It’s a small difference, but an important one, especially when platforms decide to stop services or change their rules.
The digital age, celebrated for its convenience and breadth, often puts consumers in a difficult position regarding ownership.
Access to huge libraries of films and series is undoubtedly attractive, however the terms associated with these digital assets often only become clear when the services are closed, their ownership changes, or their terms change – as we have seen in a few similar cases in the past.
ultravioletan American digital video service, allowed users to purchase movies, but… It was discontinued on July 31, 2019where users are required to transfer their purchases to other platforms if they want to keep them.
on Amazon Prime VideoSome Disney Christmas specials that have been purchased by users It suddenly became unavailable A few years ago, it was shown that digital purchases might disappear due to licensing issues.
Warner Bros. It also created a buzz When he removed the content From digital libraries to users without prior notice. For example, the user found that two seasons of the anime Final space Content they purchased on Amazon Prime Video was removed, demonstrating the fragile nature of digital ownership and platforms controlling content, even after they purchased it.
These examples, along with TalkTalk’s upcoming closure of its TV store, point to a worrying pattern in the world of digital media.
While purchasing digital content is easy and convenient, there is a problem – the sense of ownership can be temporary and can change without warning, making the digital media space something that must be approached with care and understanding.
Explanation of TalkTalk’s current TV offering
As mentioned earlier, the closure of the TalkTalk TV Store will not affect TalkTalk’s TV streaming platform.
TalkTalk currently has two separate TV offers, with two different boxes – one for “Standard” (Fibre To The Cabinet) customers, and one for Full Fiber customers.
They all come with the company’s broadband plans, so you can’t subscribe to TalkTalk TV without being a TalkTalk Broadband customer.
TalkTalk TV Option 1: Netgem Box
TalkTalk’s 4K Netgem box includes a variety of streaming apps (including Amazon’s Prime Video, Netflix, ITVX and more), and – with an antenna attached – can also be used freeview boxWith the ability to record via an optional USB stick.
This is primarily a streaming device, so it needs to connect to your broadband via WiFi. Then, you can use streaming apps and on-demand players.
Netgem box costs from TalkTalk £5 per month, As of this writing.
Note that you don’t get any TV content subscriptions included in the price — so you’re basically paying for the box and its programming — but you can add NOW memberships on top.
TalkTalk TV 2 option: Android TV Hub
In 2022, TalkTalk launched another TV box – the TalkTalk TV Hub It is a 4K/Dolby Atmos Android TV box.
Android TV Hub supports Freeview (when you Antenna connection), Free play (via broadband), as well as the thousands of apps currently available on the Google Play Store – from large streaming services like Netflix, Disney+, BBC iPlayer and others – to smaller niche apps and services.
The Android TV box also has Chromecast support built-in – so you can “cast” videos and streaming services from your phones – even some phones that don’t have a native app on the box.
Unlike the Netgem box, TalkTalk only offers Android TV Box for broadband customers Complete fibre Plans – so not available to all customers.
Android TV Box usually costs £5 per monthwith a one-time £25 Setup fee (which is waived with current offer for a limited time).
TalkTalk recently launched a new offer with Sky’s NOW, giving customers the opportunity to add a NOW Entertainment membership to their TalkTalk TV package for a total of £9.99 per month (£5 for the box and £5 for NOW), saving £60 per year.