Amazon launches on-demand service in Japan

Amazon Instant Video has launched in Japan, offering Hollywood movies and local programming totaling 26,000 titles.

The service will charge customers 100 yen (US$1) per rental and 1,000 yen to purchase.

Programming includes movies and series from US studios and content from Japanese distribution firms Shochiku Co. and Toho Co., plus broadcasters TBS, Fuji TV and NHK.

Amazon already provides the Instant Video service in the US and operates Lovefilm in the UK and Germany.

Hulu is among rival streaming services already operating in Japan.