Apple inexplicably pulling movie trailer downloads

By , May 27, 2013

Apple trailers (no download, before)Apple trailers (no download, after)

A movie buff like myself has always been a big fan of Apple’s QuickTime movie trailers web site. I’ve especially enjoyed the ability to download my favorite trailers in their full-resolution 1080p glory, useful for times when I’m without or on a slow Internet connection.

Unfortunately – and in a rather surprising move – Apple seems to have started removing the download option from both past and upcoming submissions. Worse, the company appears to have effectively eliminated 1080p trailer availability, meaning people accessing the QuickTime movie trailers web site from their computer can now only stream those videos in either 480p or 720p…

That’s a step back from the previous options that allowed for 1080p streaming along with download options for 480p, 720p and 1080p.

As you can see in the before (left) vs (after) comparison top of post, trailers uploaded to the site after May 22 no longer seem to allow for downloads.

MacRumors, which first spotted the unusual change, observes that while some trailers uploaded before May 22 can still be downloaded, Apple is actively removing the download option from movies with multiple trailers that have a trailer uploaded after that date.

For example, Disney Pixar’s Monsters University has trailers that were uploaded on the following dates: 6/20/12, 3/08/13, 5/20/13, and 5/22/13.

None of these trailers have download options.

I was able to confirm the finding.

It seems I can no longer download trailers for multiple recent and past movies and can only stream the videos in 720p, which is quite a bummer.

“While older trailers can still be downloaded from the site,” MacRumors points out, “Apple appears to be removing downloads from older trailers as newer trailers are added, slowly phasing out the availability of trailer downloads altogether.”

Two possible explanations come to mind:

Firstly, Apple may have bowed to pressure from Hollywood majors that own these trailers. If true, that would be a very unusual request, to say the least, especially given that YouTube streams trailers in 1080p.

Secondly, the change could have something to do with a rumored Apple television set that’s supposedly in the works. Perhaps Apple wants people to enjoy full-resolution movie trailers exclusively on the upcoming TV set, or on their existing telly through the $99 Apple TV set-top box.

Either way, I’m not fond of this change.

You?

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  • bw00ds

    Just another Apple annoyance we have to put up with that feeds the love/hate relationship. I think that it is ironic that one of the “We Recommend” stories on this page is “Surprise, Apple continues to lead the pack in US online movie rentals and purchases.” If they have that kind of clout, then why would Hollywood pressure them or at the very least, why would they bow to that pressure?

  • Mohammad Ridwan

    Who needs them when you got YouTube…

    • http://twitter.com/PiraCee PiraCee

      and why would you download a trailer..

      • Dan

        still nice to have the option, I think the question here is, why did they remove this feature

      • Mohammad Ridwan

        You can always download trailers from YouTube… by using a third party add-on.. there are tons of them out there

      • Dan

        Yeah… slow news day lol

      • Mohammad Ridwan

        Why Wouldn’t you..? Most don’t have the high-speed connection to stream HD quality videos.. so downloading is the next best thing…

      • http://twitter.com/aidanharris1 ✪ aidan harris ✪

        Or just hit play and then pause, do something else for 20 minutes and there you have it, one fully buffered video!

      • Mohammad Ridwan

        That’s a first class solution. Give us some more…

      • http://twitter.com/aidanharris1 ✪ aidan harris ✪

        I’m pretty sure you knew there was a hint of sarcasm in that comment. If not here’s me telling you now

      • Timothy Morrison

        I work in Broadcast Television And I used to get all my trailers there (apple trailers)

  • SimonReidy

    Apple trailers were always really well encoded in H2.64 1080p, and generally look much nicer than Youtube when watched on a 50″ screen or larger. I’d often download them for offline viewing too. Definitely a step backward by Apple.

  • TonyRaceman

    Bummer indeed.

  • Namra Muhammad

    I was reading about jailbreak tweak MiniPlayer 2.2 how did I reach here !! :p

  • ForTheSakeOfHumanity

    Pulling these 1080p/downloadable trailers won’t help Apple sell any Quicktime Player Pro licenses, nor will it help Apple sell ANY of it’s 1080p screened devices.

    Nor will it help the movie industry effectively market any of their movies.

    Unless this is making room for something newer and better, this is a terrible mistake….

  • Smithian

    Hate this. The player also won’t let you pause or go frame by frame with any keystrokes and needs to completely rebuffer if it reaches the end.
    I love good trailers, I did download quite a few, they are nearly always better than the movie!