I subscribe to Netflix for their online streaming video content. Because I go to school, I have an annual subscription to Amazon Prime, which comes with a video service. I also have a few video services available to me that I could use to rent new movies. Among them are VUDU and the online rental option that comes with my Direct TV service. There are other services out there, but I don’t subscribe for reasons I am about to state.
But first, a question: Why did Blockbuster go out of business? I can tell you why, and it’s pretty simple. They refused to adapt to a changing business model. What does that mean? It means that, for years they charged $4 per movie (give or take), and when Netflix started charging a set amount per month to rent as many DVD’s as you could watch, Blockbuster did nothing. When Redbox kiosks started popping up all over the place, allowing people to rent a DVD for $1 per night, with no late fees and ease of return at any location, Blockbuster did nothing. It wasn’t until Redbox and Netflix were firmly established and Blockbuster felt the sting of lower revenues did they decide to do something, but even then they only decided to eliminate late fees. They left their rental fees the same. As a result, the customer base of Blockbuster continued to gravitate to Redbox and Netflix. Eventually, Blockbuster joined the dodo and the Tyrannosaur: they went extinct. And all because Blockbuster refused to accept a new reality.
I’ve talked about this before. But there is a difference: Blockbuster is gone now. And so here’s the new problem I alluded to earlier. If I want to watch a new movie, I rent it from Redbox. Why? because it costs between $1 and $2. If I want to watch a movie from Direct TV, VUDU, or iTunes, it costs $4 or more. Why would I do that? As a result, I don’t rent movies from any of these services.
So my point is this: if these video rental services would lower their prices to $2 or less per movie, I would use their services instead of Redbox. I’m thinking they could even put Redbox out of business. So what’s it going to be? Your move, guys.