Apple is set to launch a movie streaming service this year, which will mark the first time the company has embraced the cloud.

This is according to CNET, who has been speaking to an Apple insider about the company's situation with Lala – the music streaming service which was bought and subsequently closed down by Apple.

It doesn't take much to think that Apple have been busy picking at the flesh off LaLa's distribution system but most thought this was for a music-streaming service.

However, CNET is reporting that this doesn't seem to be the case at the moment, due to a lack of deals on the table from music labels.

This is worrying for Apple as it is a realm that Google is threatening to enter.

It seems, because of this, the music side of the streaming service has been put on the back burner with movies being the main focus for 2010.

The idea is that the streaming service would be a keychest initiative for movies, which would mean less strain on people's hard drives as all the content purchased would stay in the cloud.

The cloud has spoken

This isn't a new idea. Last month Acetrax, another video streaming outlet, signed a deal with Panasonic to offer this service through the company's TVs.

This deal was backed up this week with news that Acetrax will also be available through Samsung sets as of September.

It is also a similar to a service that Disney has been promising for a while and something Tesco is also prepping.

The idea makes sense for Apple. If it sees that the movie streaming is a lucrative venture then it will no doubt hurry iTunes for the cloud.

The only problem is that streaming puts a massive strain on portable devices not using Wi-Fi, so we could well see the service take off initially for those who use Apple TV.

But if it is a keychest initiative it will mean that you don't buy the format but the rights to the property – so you can watch the movies you have bought on a multitude of devices.

This is surely something which will suit the loyal Apple contingent.

Via Engadget