Redbox to Offer Streaming Video? Let's Hope So

Watch out, Netflix, you may soon have a worthy challenger in the all-you-can-watch video-streaming market. Redbox, best known for its $1-per-night DVD rental kiosks that have contributed to Blockbuster's death spiral, is mulling a foray into the online movie business.

High-Def Digest reported this week that Redbox recently surveyed its customers, asking if they'd be interested in an unlimited video-streaming service that costs just $3.95 per month--roughly half of what Netflix charges for its all-you-can-stream offering. Redbox's proposed plan would include four kiosk rentals per month, the report states.

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Redbox to Try Video-Streaming? Let's Hope So
Redbox says the survey is, well, just a survey, one of many the company conducts periodically to gauge its customers' interests and preferences. So will it enter the video-streaming market? "The company is certainly looking into the possibility of it," Redbox spokesman Chris Goodrich told PC World.

Redbox's kiosks may be popular with cost-conscious consumers, but they're not exactly well-liked by the Hollywood establishment. One study last year even accused low-cost DVD rentals of hampering industry growth, impacting film and TV funding, reducing jobs and generally contributing to the decline of Western civilization.

A Redbox video-streaming service would likely resemble Netflix's: Customers would have thousands of older and obscure titles to choose from, but few new releases. Netflix recently inked deals with major studios that delay the arrival of new DVD releases by 28 days. On the plus side, these agreements also boost the number of movies and TV shows available for Netflix's video-streaming customers.

Contact Jeff Bertolucci via Twitter (@jbertolucci) or at jbertolucci.blogspot.com.

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