Zediva is a new player with an interesting twist in the online DVD rental game. When you rent a movie on Zediva, you are not only renting the disc, but also a player at the company’s data center, and the title is then streamed to you. Once you have rented a film, you have up to 14 days to complete watching the movie.
Pricing is based on a credit scale, with individual credits currently costing $1.99 and packs of 10 priced at $10. Downloads are not currently available, but users can elect to have titles shipped to them for a nominal fee. Titles can also be watched again during the 14-day period as long as they are still available.
Title selection is fairly limited right now, but the company’s FAQ claims that it will be working to grow both its capacity and selection of movies in the coming year.
Michael here at Inside Redbox recently tried the service out on his GoogleTV and made the following observations:
- The streaming quality is acceptable, but not great—comparable to DVD
- Surround sound is not an option, which may be fine for children’s shows but could be disappointing for effects-heavy titles
- The service is extremely simple to use, with no plug-ins or downloads required. It will even skip through the ads that usually precede the feature on a DVD
Overall Michael was impressed, but wondered if Zediva’s costs might skyrocket as the service becomes more popular and requires more employees at the data center. It all depends on the company’s level of automation and how many customers it can handle at any given time.
With a 10-pack of credits equalling the cost of ten Redbox rentals, would this new service be of interest to you, Insiders? Do you think enough people will find Zediva’s new offering compelling for the company to take off?