Print 18 comment(s) - last by Spivonious.. on Jun 29 at 3:04 PM

Blockbuster and Netflix kiss and make up

The online battle between Blockbuster and Netflix has come to an end. The patent litigation the two companies have been involved in since April 2006 ended yesterday -- details of the settlement are considered confidential.

The dispute sparked when Netflix accused Blockbuster of copying its "method for subscription-based online rental that allows subscribers to keep the DVDs they rent for as long as they wish without incurring any late fees, to obtain new DVDs without incurring additional charges and to prioritize and reprioritize their own personal dynamic queue--of DVDs to be rented."

Blockbuster in turn filed a motion to dismiss the injunction brought forth by Netflix and filed an anti-trust case of its own against Netflix.

"As a result of NetFlix's purported monopolistic conduct, Blockbuster may be forced out of the market, which would cede to Netflix virtually complete control of the online-DVD market," said US District Judge William Alsup in August.

Blockbuster added more fuel to the fire during the 2006 holiday season when it gave Netflix subscribers free rentals in exchange for their tear-off address flaps.

"We want these movie fans to experience getting the movies they want without the wait so they never have to be without a movie, just like Blockbuster Total Access subscribers," said Blockbuster Chairman and CEO John Antioco during the promotion.

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Gotta say...
By Spivonious on 6/29/2007 9:22:01 AM , Rating: 2
Blockbuster's service is better than Netflix. $9.99 a month gets us one movie at a time plus one coupon a month for a free in-store rental of a movie or game.

So the sequence goes:
1. receive movie in mail
2. watch movie
3. return movie to store and pick up another movie for free
4. watch store movie
5. receive movie in mail
6. watch movie
7. return both store and mail movie to store
8. repeat

This cycle happens roughly once per week. After returning it to the store we get a movie in the mail no more than 3 business days later.

I'm not super familiar with Netflix but maybe someone can enlighten me how it can get better than this?

RE: Gotta say...
By Kuroyama on 6/29/2007 10:09:18 AM , Rating: 2
Since Netflix doesn't have stores they instead give you 10 hours of free movie downloads per month (if you use the $9.99 a month plan, or 18 hours with the $17.99 plan, etc). The selection of available downloads mostly consists of old movies, B films, or BBC shows, but they do start playing within 30 seconds of when the download begins, even with my slow 768kbps DSL. But if you just want something spontaneously then this'll suffice as you can probably find something to kill time with, and there's no need to ever go to a video store.

RE: Gotta say...
By Spivonious on 6/29/2007 2:54:31 PM , Rating: 2
So I would get roughly 3-4 movies downloaded per month and I have to choose from a crappy selection (not to mention having to watch it through a computer)?

I know going outside is dangerous these days, but I'm willing to risk a trip to video store on the chance that they'll have a movie on my queue in stock or I'll see something I never thought of watching.

"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997

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