Based in the UK, LoveFilm was a DVD-by-Mail and video streaming provider that served European countries such as the UK, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, and Norway. The service claimed to have a selection of 70,000 titles and more than 4 million DVD, Blu-ray, and game rentals per month. LoveFilm also started its movie online service which enabled certain subscribers to watch selected films online.
By 2011, the service had reached 2 million subscribers and was acquired by Amazon.
Back in 2008, Amazon had earned a stake in LoveFilm through a deal in which the European company acquired Amazon’s European DVD Rental service. As a part of the deal, Amazon had to invest in LoveFilm. In 2011, Amazon acquired the remaining 58% of LoveFilm. Many suspected that this was Amazon’s effort to make it difficult for Netflix to prosper in the European market. At the time of the acquisition, LoveFilm had over 1.4 million subscribers.
Six years after the acquisition, in 2017, Amazon announced that it was closing down LoveFilm’s DVD rental services. According to Amazon, the decreasing demand for discs and the popularity of online streaming had prompted this decision.
An Amazon spokesperson revealed that the discs from LoveFilm would be donated to charities. While a number was not placed on how many discs were left in inventory, the spokesperson did inform that the catalog consisted of 80,000 titles.
Many subscribers of the service were not happy with the decision as they were not comfortable with online streaming yet. Fans of DVDs and Blu-Ray wanted the wide selection and range of films available in those mediums instead of online streaming. DVD and Blu-ray enthusiasts lamented the loss of one of the best DVD rental services of its time.