It was only a matter of time.
According to New TeeVee, Redbox has started to offer Blu-ray discs, for rent, in nearly 13,300 of it’s 23,000 kiosks. The price point per rental is at a premium, $1.50 as compared to the $1 which is still the norm in the majority of kiosks, even as the company begins to experiment with higher priced DVD rentals.
The company will also be unveiling a streaming service later this year, reportedly in the fall. While it’s not difficult to decide between films in the kiosk’s inventory, the catch here is that you aren’t able to search online to see if the specific release is in HD or not. While their catalogue of films isn’t the most vast, kiosks only hold up to 200 different titles, this is definitely an interesting decision, as it forces users to decide right then and there if they want to see something in Blu, or in regular DVD.
Personally, I’ve been rather vocal in my disdain for the hellacious vending machine company, this does definitely expand their reach. However, with such a small inventory of Blu-ray releases, I can’t help but think that this really isn’t going to make a massive difference. Yes, you will get people to use it, but I don’t see people switching over to Redbox simply for Blu-ray rentals, particularly when other outlets have much more varied selections. Overall, this will move the needle for them profit wise, but because of a price increase, not because of new users.
Source: New TeeVee