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No one familiar with the movie rental business can deny that 2009 was a huge year for kiosk rentals, with dominant player Redbox experiencing massive growth. Rentrak Corp. has recently reported that “U.S. consumer spending on DVD and Blu-ray Disc rentals business rose 4.1% to $6.5 billion in 2009”. In addition, 2009 kiosk revenue, spearheaded by Redbox, increased by an incredible 94% to nearly $1 billion. The Coinstar-owned kiosk operator also passed the 20,000 kiosk mark last year.

This kiosk rental growth came at a time when the B&M and online rental sectors declined a combined 3.2%. Rental growth was not as swift in the 4th quarter of the year, which Rentrak VP Brad Hackley attributed to “the late year downturn to closures of physical stores by both Blockbuster and Hollywood/Movie Gallery”.

As we move into 2010, will Redbox be able to maintain this momentum and meet or beat 2009’s numbers? Will the Hollywood Three have their way and strongarm consumers away from rentals and back to more profitable (for them) movie buying? Leave your predictions in the comments.

[via Video Business]

12 Responses to “Video Rental Kiosk Revenue Up 94% in ’09”

  1. Visitor [Join Now]
    1st timer [visitor]

    If the studios managed to somehow overturn the first-sale doctrine and prevent people from renting DVDs such that the only way to watch new films was to either 1) see them in the theater, 2) buy them, or 3) watch them PPV, I would just find something else to do other than watch movies.

    Even at $1/night, there are a lot of movies I won’t waste my time watching. 10 years ago we didn’t have as many entertainment alternatives. But now with gaming (online, console, pc) and unlimited information at our fingertips, there is so much more competition for my free time. Movies just aren’t the only game in town anymore like they were a decade ago.

    But I admit, I watch 5x more movies at $1/night than I’d watch at $5/night. I feel less cheated if the movie is bad and stop watching. I’d prefer to browse the web than spend $11+ on a movie however good it may be.

    • Visitor [Join Now]
      John Small [visitor]

      Bad news for Redbox then! Looks like their court case is pretty much out the window now.

      Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group and Netflix Jan. 6 announced a pact designed to both satiate the rental market while capitalizing on the sales potential of new-release DVDs and Blu-ray Discs.

      Under the agreement Warner Home Video will continue to directly supply Netflix with new titles, which will be made available to Netflix subscribers 28 days after street date. The month-long window was chosen after sales data suggested 75% of sellthrough occurs in the first four weeks of release.

      Warner also will add to Netflix’s selection of direct-to-video titles and catalog movies available for instant streaming to TVs and computers.

      “We’ve been discussing new approaches with Warner Bros. for some time now, and believe we’ve come up with a creative solution that is a win-win all around,” said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer for Netflix. “We’re able to help an important business partner meet its objectives while improving service levels for our members by acquiring substantially more units than in the past after a relatively short sellthrough window. At the same time, we’re able to extend the range of choices available to be streamed to our members.”

  2. Visitor [Join Now]
    Mike [visitor]

    The first-sale doctrine suit is long over and done with, the studios aren’t even attempting to overthrow that.

  3. Visitor [Join Now]
    The [visitor]

    The Redbox site isn’t working anymore on Firefox. GOOD JOB REDBOX “PROFESSIONALS”!!

    First, you started having to use Javascript or else you couldn’t “search” by your ZIP code.


    Redbox, you have a Microsoft junkie as a web programmer, he wants to lock out all but IE users. YOU CAN’T AFFORD THIS!

    Why didn’t you just leave it alone?

    • Administrator
      Michael [administrator]

      I am not having any trouble in Firefox or Safari or Chrome – I just tested them all. Perhaps you ran into a glitch?

      Now that I think about it, I have never seen the Redbox site run as fast as it is for me right now.

      • Member [Join Now]

        There was a thread regarding the new redbox site on the Article ‘New Redbox release for the week of Dec 22nd’. It was off topic there too, but 9 people voiced their frustration with the new site. Personally, I can’t use the search function anymore on my work computer because they have javascript locked out – it’s considered a security risk.

        It all comes down to progamming style. Some progammers go for the least common denominator and program for maximum compatiblity with all browsers and lesser end user problems. They tend to use simple html whenever possible. On the other hand, there are progammers that want to use new features, fancy bells and whistles and only program for the newest up to date environments. They like to use flash, javascript, etc. It appears the programmer for the redbox site falls into the latter category.

        That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but if you are going to do that, you really need to specify the requirements for using your site. (For example, some sites state that you must enable popups or cookies). Redbox did not do this. I believe that is where they went wrong.

        • Visitor [Join Now]
          asdf [visitor]

          The search function for locations is from, not from redbox. Redbox leases out google’s map for use on the website.

          The map is generally the main problem everyone has been experiencing, and as far as I know google has been contacted for the issue and is working fixing capability issues.

        • Visitor [Join Now]
          Vernon Dent [visitor]

          I wish I had written this post.

    • Visitor [Join Now]
      FalconFour [visitor]

      You say “you” as if you’re incapable of reading the banner at the top of every page saying that THIS SITE IS NOT AFFILIATED WITH REDBOX. Not to mention how wholly irrelevant your comment is to this article.

      “You” just proved how uselessly incompetent you are. Congrats.

  4. Visitor [Join Now]
    rb [visitor]

    Easy to believe Redbox kiosk rentals up by 94percent. I went to return dvd I got yesterday and the kiosk was FULL and wouldn’t let me return. Luckily, I had the working code abts25 and used it on another movie so I could free up space for the dvd I was returning!!! Seems a lot of bloggers have been reporting that many, many of the Redbox kiosks are getting so full with returns that they must then make another trip to a different kiosk to make their return. :-( To top it off, I had to stop for gas anyway and seems gas went up by around 20cents a gallon in the past 2 weeks!

  5. Visitor [Join Now]
    Vernon Dent [visitor]

    Wouldn’t it nice if the redbox website would indicate the *capacity* of kiosk? To avoid the: “sorry pal all filled up screen”.

    • Visitor [Join Now]
      rb [visitor]

      Don’t know if that would work because it might say “all filled up” when you look up a kiosk online before you leave your house, but then by the time you drive to the kiosk some other customer might have rented a dvd from that kiosk and then it wouldn’t be “all filled up”–lucky for you. NOT SO LUCKY for you though if you look up a kiosk online and it says “space still available” but then by the time you drive to that kiosk other customers could have returned their dvds and that kiosk (that said space was available when you looked online) might then be full by the time you get there. By “capacity” if you mean when you look online it might say 75, or 80, or 90 percent full, etc. that might work/be helpful. That way you’d want to go to return at your local kiosk that is the least full when you look online before you leave the house.