$1 per night movie rentals a little too rich for your blood? If you live near a University of Wisconsin campus, just stroll on over to a Big Box DVD kiosk and you can pick up a disc for six cents an hour. The kiosks are owned by Mosquito Productions, which currently has three of the boxes located on UW campuses and a fourth outside its offices in Blaine, Minnesota.
The company says its Big Box DVD kiosks hold up to 15 times the number of discs in a typical Redbox machine, and claims a catalog of more than 100,00 titles. New releases are priced at six cents per hour, with catalog films and Blu-ray discs costing four and nine cents per hour, respectively.
Interestingly, Mosquito Productions owner John Buchmann cites lax Hollywood attitudes towards retailer pricing as creating lucrative business opportunities for companies such as Big Box DVD and Redbox. Says Buchmann:
“Wal-Mart started selling DVDs at a loss to get their feet in the door well before Redbox had any sort of foothold. Since there was only a $7-$10 difference between renting and buying, it was inevitable that the rental prices would go down. . . Hollywood simply hasn’t protected their product on the retail end for years now, and cheap rental services are an inevitable result of that.”
Mosquito Productions is currently looking to expand its kiosk network, and has high hopes that its low hourly rate will resonate with consumers.
Marketing studies have shown time and again that Americans are very focused on up-front expense and not nearly as concerned with long-term costs. That’s the reason why wireless companies, for example, are able to lure people into highly profitable, multi-year contracts with the promise of cheap or free phones. Mosquito Productions may be counting on the same principle to hold here, with renters getting psyched about the six cent per hour rate and then keeping films for an entire night or two. Big Box DVD’s pricing on new release titles translates into a nightly rate of $1.44—nearly 50% higher than an equivalent Redbox rental. On the other hand, of course, punctilious renters who watch and return a movie immediately are getting a fabulous deal.
What do you think, Insiders? If given the opportunity to rent from either a Big Box or a Redbox, which kiosk would get your business? How well do you think these new boxes are going to be received? Leave us your opinion in the comments.
[via New Tee Vee]