Is it lights out for video rental outlets?

Is it lights out for video rental outlets?

The video rental game is a changing climate. With by-mail services like Netflix, combined with the convenience of video-on-demand and rental kiosks like Redbox, the traditional video rental outlet seems like a vestigial service.

The evidence is immanent. Blockbuster closed hundreds of stores over the last two years, and the regional players are closing at a brisk pace.

A local independent rental outlet recently changed their model to provide $1 rentals for anything in the store – Blu-ray, DVD, and video games. This is a great deal to be sure. But you know this came from the fact that every grocery store in the area has a rental kiosk for $1 per day for new and catalog titles, and it’s more convenient. Convenience seems to trump the fact that stores have a much greater selection of movies, and a better chance they’ll have a copy of the new release you want to see, and they have foreign and independent films the kiosks don’t carry.

But we’re in a culture of instant gratification. For so many, getting it now beats out over quality and content, even if price is at parity.

Do you still go to a video store to rent? Why or why not?

About Steven Kippel

Steven Kippel has worked as a systems designer for a leading high-end audio/video custom integrator in Southern California since 2003. He is responsible for researching new technologies and integrating them into existing systems and new construction projects. He has designed several high-profile systems for discriminating clients on the cutting-edge of technology. When he is not hard at work, Steven is spending time with his wife, playing with his band or promoting concerts and bands in the Inland Empire. His favorite bands include The Cure, U2, Eisley, Living Sacrifice and DragonForce.

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One Comment on “Is it lights out for video rental outlets?”

  1. I was using Blockbuster’s Total Access plan, which was originally very convenient due to the feature that allowed you to swap by mail DVD’s for instore DVD’s, but then they changed the program and ruined it.

    They now cap your by mail to instore trade-ins at 5 per month and don’t ship your next online DVD until you return the instore DVD.

    This caused me to drop them and switch to Netflix, which we are now thoroughly enjoying along with the instant streaming service.

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