Netflix was sitting around looking at its money when it realized that it didn’t quite have enough to do the whole Scrooge McDuck swimming maneuver, so the video giant has come up with an idea: “family plans” that allow you to stream more than one program at once.
Who isn’t scared of Netflix? Jeffrey L. Bewkes, the chief executive of Time Warner, that’s who. The NYT says that although Netflix has been a successful business partner to the major studios for the past few years — the deals are expiring and they won’t get such an easy ride next time.
The NYT is reporting that Netflix has cut a deal with start-up pay-TV channel Epix that will give it exclusive rights to steam Paramount Pictures, Lionsgate and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer films. What does this mean for you? If you have Netflix, you’ll be able to stream movies like ‘Iron Man 2’ three months after they appear on pay television.
Reader A. says Redbox randomly tried to charge him $1.25 for a $1 normal DVD rental. What’s up with that?
Reader G is a little ticked off at Redbox because he reserved a new release using Redbox.com, headed over to the kiosk to pick it up and found that some angry person had smashed the touchscreen. No big deal, he’d just call and get a refund, right? Apparently not. Redbox only offers “free rental codes” that G says he can’t use on reserved DVDs. This kinda bugs him.
Are you kinda bored? Want to watch movies on Netflix’s website. Nope. Can’t. It’s mysteriously down.
Netflix has agreed to terms with Warner Bros. that will delay rentals of new DVD releases for 28 days. Warner Bros. has unilaterally imposed the same restriction on Redbox — and those negotiations were apparently much less friendly and involved more lawyers.
Walmart announced yesterday that it will be slashing prices to below wholesale on 10 of the most popular DVDs that will be released soon, says the LA Times. Target announced that it will be matching Walmart. Amazon has not yet responded.
Best Buy announced a “a Best Buy-branded offering, available starting early next year,” that will stream “first-run DVDs” online directly to consumers, says the NYT Bits Blog.
Back in the day there used to be these things called VHS tapes. They used to cost a lot of money — so there were these places you could go to rent them. The last surviving relic of this bygone era, Blockbuster Video (also known as the company that was almost stupid enough to buy Circuit City), announced in a regulatory filing today that it plans to close over 800 stores by the end of next year. This is nearly twice the number they previously announced.
HackingNetflix was invited to tour a Netflix shipping center where 50 employees process as many as 90,000 discs a day. Pretty cool.
One of the hotter indie flicks of the summer, Steven Soderbergh’s The Girlfriend Experience, debuted on Amazon’s rental service this week, way before the movie opens in theaters May 22. At $9.99 for a three-day rental, the movie is also cheaper to rent than it will be to see at many theaters.
Hey, guess who isn’t broke? Netflix. [Bizjournals]
We’ve had no less than 20 people email us to congratulate Netflix for apologizing after their shipping system experienced some delays. Here’s the email and some comments from Netflix’s customers:
Blockbuster has finished snooping around Circuit City’s medicine cabinet and the verdict is in: Blockbuster has changed its mind.
At their shareholders meeting Wednesday, Blockbuster announced that they would soon begin testing a “ATM”-style machine that consumers could use to download movies “on the go.”
IFC has inked a “devilish” multi-year exclusive distribution deal with Blockbuster, says Chicago Sun-Times blogger and editor of RogerEbert.com, Jim Emerson.
Reader and commenter Salviati writes in to share his personal experience with Blockbuster and his theory for why they will never survive fierce competition from Netflix and the new Apple video rentals.