Warner Bros. has agreed a new deal with Redbox that will give Redbox access to its DVDs, but only 28 days after the retail release. The move is designed to encourage people to actually buy the shiny, new DVDs when they come out. Why is that a problem?
The idea makes sense from Warner’s perspective. It’s no secret that DVD sales aren’t what they used to be, so Warner wants to squeeze every last penny out of them as possible. Think: what was the last DVD you purchased? I bought a couple of Dragon Gate USA DVDs the other day, but that hardly counts. I bought a Top Gear DVD collection in London in the fall, but that was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: when will I ever go to an HMV again? Before that? I couldn’t even tell you, probably like a Simpsons season in 2005 or something. The point is, who buys new DVDs anymore? Exactly.
That’s what Warner’s afraid of: people will just rent all movies from now from places like Netflix and Redbox and iTunes. (I imagine Redbox is pretty damn huge, what with it being right there in Wal-Mart. As we all know, Wal-Mart runs this country.) So, in order to prevent Redbox from eating into its sales for a bit, we now have the 28-day wait. Big deal, it’s 28 days.