Every time I go to the grocery story (I'm not kidding, this happened last night) I am mildly surprised to see multiple people in line to order Redbox movies. I know they are cheap as hell and an incredible deal but I have become so accustomed to streaming all of my video content I forget there are other ways to consume movies. It took awhile to catch up, but now Amazon Instant Video has pretty much everything and more than a Redbox Kiosk so I have become the sucker that pays $4 for a 24 hour movie rental instead of $1.
While it seems that Redbox has a fairly successful business model, they are expanding into the streaming world as well. For the first time, it is likely that Netflix Instant will have a significant competitor. Redbox Instant by Verizon is set to launch by the end of the year, but there are no details yet as to on exactly what date. Redbox and Verizon have kept many details very quiet but there are some things we do know and some that are rumored. The guys over at Gigaom, did some digging and found answers on a help site that has since been locked to the public. Of course any of this can change, but here are some things they found out:
- The service will likely cost less than Netflix's monthly subscription rate at around $6. However, before you get too excited, keep in mind that it has taken years for Netflix to build up the library they have and even their Instant service could use the addition of a lot of content.
- There will be a mixed membership option that will allow a specific number of credits for rentals of physical Redbox DVDs each month.
- VOD rentals will be available for newer titles at differing prices and this part of the service will be more similar to Amazon Instant Video.
The service will be available onn the web, Android and iOS devices, the Xbox 360 and select Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players. There are some HUGE devices missing here, mainly Roku and PlayStation and while I am sure they are working on those deals, they should make that happen...and fast.
As I mentioned, I am more and more interested in streaming content online and am excited to hear details about any new services available. While Netflix has mostly been the sole provider for film and television series that offers a monthly subscription service, I am not necessarily loyal to the brand. They have made some mistakes and I would be happy to change to another provider. However, I hope that Redbox Verizon Instant keeps in mind the most important thing when launching this new service - great content. If they do not provide a substantial library of content that isn't available elsewhere, it is going to be difficult to convince me to switch to another service. While the DVD rentals might be nice for many, anyone that is already streaming video is likely to have a device to play VOD and the libraries of Amazon and Netflix might make this option on their service obsolete.
What are you guys thoughts? Anything about this new service intriguing to you? Are you ready to jump off the Netflix Instant ship?