Verizon to Launch Redbox Instant Streaming Video Service by Christmas

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Verizon Wireless and Coinstar’s Redbox have shed some light on their joint video service venture, known as Redbox Instant, promising to offer subscription streaming, movie sales and rentals by Christmas, as well as DVDs from local kiosks.

Redbox InstantCustomers will have their pick from a selection of DVDs from any of Redbox’s almost 40,000 kiosks, in addition to movie rentals of their choosing online and purchases for download. Through an application that will be available at Apple’s AppStore and Google’s Android store, as well as other marketplaces, users will be able to download titles to mobile devices, game consoles, and set-top boxes.

Currently being tested in the homes of about 500 Verizon employees, Redbox Instant by Verizon will initially focus only on newer movies that have been available for sale and rental, according to Verizon’s vice president of strategy and planning for consumer and mass business markets, Eric Bruno.

Neither company has announced pricing nor a specific launch date for Redbox Instant, though Bruno said they are looking to start the service between late November and mid-December, after a short period of public testing.

The Quest for Content Continues

The venture, which is 65% owned by Verizon, was first announced earlier this year. As the market for subscription streaming continues to grow, more and more companies have launched video services of their own to challenge the one which started it all, Netflix.

As of June 30, Netflix had 24 million U.S. customers for its $7.99 a month subscription program, securing itself as the largest competitor for Internet-based content consumption. While the California company will certainly be the biggest challenger for Coinstar and Verizon, it surely won?t be the only, as Apple?s iTunes, Amazon’s Instant Video and the recently-announced Nook Video from Barnes & Noble all offer similar streaming features for content-hungry consumers.

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