Renting Blockbuster

Throwback Thursday: Renting from Block to Box

Renting a movie used to be an accepted process, consisting of driving to the local video store, selecting the movie, paying $6.99 for a 3-day rental and returning home. But ever since the largest movie entertainment rental company in the United States and U.K. filed for bankruptcy merely twenty-five years after its founding, the process has changed. Blockbuster fell, and Redbox and Netflix emerged.

Thus began the ever-present jargon of today’s movie rental industry, “online streaming,” “Will you pick a movie up from red box,” “did you check the mailbox today for our movies,” and, of course, “Why is this movie lagging so much?”

What merely existed ten years ago is a thing of the past–which is a lesson learned time and time again in any industry. Change is always happening, and happening fast. In order to be successful in any industry, the future should always be on mind. Redbox saw the opportunity and starting with just ten kiosks in Washington in 2002. By 2011, 68% of Americans were within a five minute drive of a Redbox kiosk.

Netflix has made similar if not more extraordinary accomplishments. With their online movie and TV show instant streaming features, Netflix allows subscribers instant access to their favorite movies and shows. With their continued success, Netflix has even begun creating and developing original TV series, such as the popular show, Arrested Development. Netflix took the rights of show after its third season and in turn, released a fourth season exclusively on its site.

Redbox and Netflix’s apparent success challenged Blockbuster to keep relevant and fresh. Although down, the former movie rental champ is not out. Blockbuster is currently providing movie rental home delivery service, Blockbuster on Demand (which allows users to instantly stream movies and shows for a small fee of $2.99) and the ability to shop for used movies online. Not only that, but Blockbuster has heavily invested into making its Blockbuster on Demand available to watch on any PC, Mac, Android phone, tablet and Samsung Smart TV. Blockbuster’s grim future looks a lighter now that they are finally looking ahead, and this can be the reason for Blockbuster’s future success alongside Redbox and Netflix.

Whether or not Blockbuster will make it to survive another day is unknown, but we do know we will always remember those commercials that warmed our hearts during the Super Bowl. Thanks Blockbuster for the memories…but not for all those late fees.


Cover Photo Source: Paul Cheek via Flickr

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’][/author_image] [author_info]Kevin is a Junior Executive at SJG. He is currently working towards a degree in Advertising and a minor in Spanish at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Outside the office, you can be sure he’s commuting back and forth to Champaign for other work with his radio station at school. [/author_info] [/author]