Quality Differences between Online Video Providers

The Wall Street Journal recently published an excellent article by Joshua Fruhlinger comparing the quality of online video options.  If you are interested in A/V (audio/video) quality, Fruhlinger does a good job evaluating current offerings.  The bottom line is that many of these options are now quite good, but none yet meet the quality standard set by Blu-ray discs.  If the convenience of an online service is more important to you than A/V quality, the article clearly explains which online services are better under various conditions.

Amazon is one of the lowest quality services, an oddity in an organization that is otherwise known for great service.  One thing (not spelled out in the article) that is especially frustrating about Amazon’s service is that their HD offering – the lowest quality HD offering of any service – is not even available to their PC subscribers.  That’s right, Amazon only provides standard definition video to the one consumer segment where 100% of the users have high definition screens.  While Amazon is obviously filled with very bright and motivated people, I don’t think they’ve thought about this limitation from a consumer point of view…