Video-on-Demand available in HD via Amazon

Seattle (WA) – Amazon expanded its Video on Demand service on Tuesday to include more than  500 HD television shows and movies from Sony Pictures, Warner Brothers Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Showtime Networks, and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios. Can Amazon catch up with Netflix?

Customers will be able to both order and view television shows and movies right from their televisions via compatiable set top boxes including TiVo Series 3 DVRs, the Sony Bravia Internet Link, the Roku digital video player and as of Tuesday Panasonic VIERA CAST-enabled HDTVs.

“Both Panasonic and Amazon are extremely consumer centric and this functionality will provide the consumer with a myriad of entertainment choices—consumer[s] will have access to a vast selection of movie and TV entertainment at their finger tips with just a click of a button,” Merwan Mereby , Panisonic’s vice president of new business and development said. “It’s fitting that Panasonic and Amazon have joined creative forces to create this unique entertainment vehicle.”

High definition movie rentals cost anywhere from $3.99 to $4.99, and television episodes cost $2.99 each. Customers also have the ability to purchase and watch their HD television shows online via a computer or other compatible devices and even download them to their PC for viewing offline.

 “Our customers have been asking us for two things: HD and the ability to watch movies and TV shows instantly on their television,” said Amazon’s vice president of music and video Bill Carr. “We plan to continue making it easier than ever for customers to instantly enjoy their favorite TV shows and movies in HD from the comfort of their living rooms.”