It appears that Netflix has some new competition in the form of a Redbox and Verizon partnership. Today they're slowly rolling out their content streaming alternative to the masses. For $8 per month, Redbox Instant will have unlimited streaming and four DVD rentals; $9 if users opt for the Blu-ray option. As part of the launch, Redbox Instant has released their universal app for iOS that works on iDevices. To date, it is a mystery what contracts the Redbox and Verizon partnership has with studios with regards to content.
For those brave early adopters out there, y'all have the chance to get in on the Redbox Instant action by signing up on their private beta via their website.
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Good news for everyone owning a Kindle Fire and subscribed to Amazon Prime (as well as owners of any other media streaming device with Prime compatibility,) as Amazon has announced that it will now offer its subscribers increased instant streaming of videos to supported devices. The press release states that users will be able to stream TV shows from MTV, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, TV Land, Spike, VH1, BET, CMT and Logo.
All of this is made possible due to Amazon recently making a deal with Viacom, bringing the total number of available streaming offerings to over 15,000, all of which are supported on over 300 devices. Between Netflix, the Redbox-Verizon deal, and Amazon Prime, the streaming video subscription space is heating up!
As Netflix continues to bleed customers (although that trend seems to have slowed down considerably,) Redbox has stepped in to save the day, well so we hope. The rental kiosk service will be taking a stab at video streaming options. With the success they’ve had with rentals, it was only a matter of time until the company jumped into on demand streaming. Set to be released later this year, Redbox will be available on your nearest handheld device.
Redbox will be partnering with Verizon to stream their video selection, and it appears that Verizon will be managing their service and streaming content. Though there are no set details as to how the service will work, what it will cost, or when it will launch. This is definitely an interesting one though, so we will be keeping our eye on this one.
It's Halloween, and with that, Redbox responds to the trick-or-treat question with a 20% price increase at its 34,000 movie rental kiosks that starts today.
So what's the reason for the 20-cent price hike?
Congress. Specifically, Coinstar cites the recent passage of the Durbin Amendment as the reason why it has to jump its rates (in addition to any other increased operating expenses the company's faced). For those uninformed, the Durbin Amendment comes with two major provisions with which consumers have likely come into contact.
The first provision slapped a limit on the interchange fees that banks are allowed to charge – essentially, the money that they make from retailers whenever a consumer uses a debit card to make a purchase. In response, banks have started to scramble to cover the lost revenue, including going so far as to tell customers that they will soon be assessed a fee for using their debit cards to purchase items.
Redbox is trying to get Americans off their streaming movie services and down to the local kiosk on August 25th with a free DVD rental.
The movie-rental kiosk service is attempting to lure existing customers down to the local grocery with the free DVD rental, normally worth just a buck. And there's a catch, as well as a bonus.
The offer was emailed on Sunday. Redbox officials weren't available for comment over the weekend.
So far, Redbox hasn't indicated how many customers will receive the free code, or if it applies to frequent customers, occasional customers (like or family) or new, potential additions. The catch? Each user needs to access the code via Facebook, and signing in allows Redbox to access your personal information, including your Likes, and post an update(s) to your Wall.
Hey, remember when we told you that Redbox was testing video game rentals? Well, it looks like those tests were a success, as the company is now stocking games in their red kiosks nationwide. They've got new titles like Brink, Dirt 3, and Duke Nukem Forever waiting for you to rent today. You can find Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii titles available in Redbox kiosks, and they'll all cost you $2 per day.
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While they originally started testing out a video game rental service in August of 2009 at select Redbox kiosks, the DVD rental giant is seeking to take their video game options nationwide this week. Added markets include those in the West, Midwest, and Atlantic Coast. A look at Redbox's website shows a large offering of video games on the Wii, PS3, Xbox 360, PS2 and Nintendo DS. One rental will cost $2 per day. This may seem like a bit much, considering I remember a time when I could rent a game for a week from Blockbuster for just five dollars. Perhaps a set weekly rate would help their cause much more. Would you rent video games from Redbox for $2 per day? Or would you prefer they have a set weekly rate instead?
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What’s the easiest way for a behemoth of a company, like Blockbuster, that seemingly owns its market segment to die? Being unwilling to change with the times. Note, I said unwilling, not unable. With the amount of money that Blockbuster was bringing in during the VHS-to-DVD transition, you’d think that they’d have better planned for the future—especially when Netflix arrived on the scene 13 years ago. Instead, the company was too brash and egotistical to realize that their business model would be in need of a major overhaul, and now they are paying for it. Today Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy. At this point, they don’t plan to shut down any stores or anything…but hey, Hollywood Video went bankrupt this past February, and a few months later, they shuttered operations completely. Just looking at what Blockbuster currently offers by way of online on-demand viewing, we wouldn’t be surprised (although we’d be saddened) if they were gone within 24 months.
What do you think? Any Blockbuster die-hards still around out there?
Read More | Ars
In a last ditch effort to keep up with their online counterpart Netflix, and those oh so convenient Redbox machines found at nearly every grocery store, Blockbuster started slanging their rentals via snail mail. However, with the video game market growing ever larger thanks to blockbusters of their own, such as Halo and Call of Duty, Blockbuster needed another ace in the hole in order to compete.
Enter Blockbuster’s new plan to counter the Gamefly epidemic. As of now, you will be able to order not just movies through the mail, but video games as well. This allows Playstation, Xbox 360, and Wii fanboys to get their fix without so much as leaving the couch. With this maneuver Blockbuster hopes to counter lackluster game sales they’ve been battling with, thanks to more relevant gaming outlets in the form of Gamestop and Gamefly. Of which the former offers an awesome trade-in system, and the latter specializes in mailing games directly to your house.
What do you think of Blockbuster’s “new” way to rent video games? Will you make Blockbuster your new priority for video game rentals, or will you stick to your old routine? If you wanna see how it all works, you can get a two-week Blockbuster Online free trial.
Read More | Blockbuster Online
It seems Redbox is finally catching up with the times, as they are now offering Blu-ray rentals in 13,300 kiosks. They plan on having Blu-ray availability in all 26,000 Redbox locations by the fall, but for now it seems those on the West Coast are in luck. We’ve seen a bunch of California and Seattle-area zip code kiosks stocked and ready to serve up that high definition 1080p rental goodness. Among the launch titles available are The Book of Eli, Green Zone, and Bounty Hunter. If you want to check and see if any Redbox kiosks near you are offering Blu-ray titles, they’ve got a way for you to check for that, but it won’t tell you which specific titles are available.