The Amazon Instant Video (abbreviated to AIV), formerly known as Amazon Video on Demand or VOD is a streaming video service available only for United States residents that allows for streaming and download of films and television shows through the Internet. It was first released in 2006 as Amazon Unbox, which was later rebranded to Amazon Video on Demand, which was in itself replaced by the Amazon Instant Video renaming. Today, the Amazon Unbox still refers to the media player bundled with the service, though it has now remained optional; most films and shows rented and purchased with the Amazon Instant Video service can be played on a variety of players, and the stream can be watched on any browser as long as the Adobe Flash Player plugin is installed.
Amazon claims that the films on their catalog are of DVD quality while minimizing disk space. However, a closer look indicates that the quality and bitrate of their videos are effectively half of the standard DVD definition; the AIV video has about 2500 k/bits of bitrate, while a standard DVD one has more or less 5000 k/bits. However, it makes up for it with a smaller file size since AIV uses a new codec called VC-1, which minimizes disk space while maximizing the video quality.
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If you have additional information about which types of files Amazon Video on Demand Movies & TV can process, please do get in touch - we would love hearing from you.
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