Those not familiar with the service should know that RedBox is basically a movie vending machine. You rent physical discs at $1 per day ($2 for Blu and games) using your credit card. I’ve used it a few times and since there are so many kiosks in my area, the catalog selection is pretty good (mostly if you’re looking for newer releases) and the discs are easy to return. It’s pretty slick actually.
Today on RedBox support site, there was a bit of a leak in which some images popped up of the company’s new streaming service designed to try and take on Netflix and Amazon.
Though difficult to make out from the leaked photos, details are that the service may, MAY launch as early as December 17th with dedicated apps for Android, iOS, and Xbox 360. Presumably you’ll be able to watch on your Mac/PC desktop as well (Silverlight plugin required).
Subscription prices begin at $6 per month with unlimited streaming, though content selection is said to be smaller than what is available on Netflix’s streaming catalog. But, Redbox Instant will expand beyond streaming with premium, VOD rentals and purchases (similar to Amazon) without a subscription and you’ll even be able to purchase movies which can be stored on select devices for later offline viewing. On top of all this, there is an $8 subscription plan that gives users credits for up to 4 DVD rentals per month at Redbox kiosk locations.
All of this sounds pretty darn great to me. Everything will ultimately depend on quality of the stream and the quantity and quality of the titles in the catalog. It’s probably safe to say that it will be nowhere near the size of Netflix’s catalog, but if you’re in an urban area and like the prospect of getting new releases right away, the promise of physical discs readily available is a very nice perk. All at a price less than Netflix.
Color me intrigued! I’l be keeping on eye out for this over the coming weeks and will likely at least give it a test drive. Without the ability to play the service on my PS3, I’ll have to settle for the mobile version, but at least I’ll be able to give it a run.
All of this reminds me, if you’ve actually bothered to read this article to here, the first five people to ask for them in the comments below, will get a RedBox promo code for one free title. If you’re not in the United States, they’re no good to you, but if you want one anyway to send to a friend or something, just ask! First five people get one.