Microsoft to get Redbox Instant by Verizon service for Xbox 360 consoles

Microsoft will soon add a new video streaming service that many believe could be a major rival to Netflix. Today, the company announced it will soon offer an app for users who are currently beta testing the Redbox Instant by Verizon service.

Verizon announced their partnership with Netbox's parent company Coinstar a year ago to provide both a video streaming service as well as a way for customers to also get access to Blu-Rays and DVDs from the thousands of Redbox kiosks in the US for one monthly fee; closed beta testing for the streaming service began in late 2012.

Today, Microsoft's Major Nelson announced that people who are part of the Redbox Instant beta will " ... receive an email with a unique code to access the app on Xbox 360 in the coming days." If you are interested, you can still sign up for the beta test at the Redbox Instant website. The subscription price is $8 a month for DVD or $9 a month for Blu-Ray and includes four one day credits a month for renting those discs in addition to the unlimited video streaming service.

The site added:

Through the app, Xbox 360 movie fans can also purchase and rent the newest digital releases without needing a subscription. Redbox Instant by Verizon combines disc + subscription, purchase and rental viewing choices into a compelling destination so movie fans can always find a movie to enjoy.

There's no word on when the Redbox Instant by Verizon service will launch to the public.

Source: Major Nelson | Image via Redbox

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19 Comments

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Huh, your website is the first I have seen to mention an option for Blu-ray and the extra dollar charge. Blu-ray is more expensive to provide, but Redbox kiosks have such limited choices so I am skeptical about the value. That's what I like about my DISH Blockbuster @Home, is that I can stream to my iPad when I'm on my break and working at my DISH office or on a trip for them, AND it only costs $10 a month and includes unlimited games and Blu-ray by mail. Now it's just too convenient to use Blockbuster @Home since I don't have to leave the house to rent and yet I have hundreds of thousands of choices over Redbox Instant.

Skyfrog said,
No other console or device makes you pay a subscription to access other subscription services.

And no other console or device has an online service even remotely comparable with Xbox LIVE. You get what you pay for and if you've done PC, Wii, PS3 or any of the handhold device gaming online you will know exactly what I'm talking about. For a pretty small price you are getting a premium service.

Netflix and Hulu Plus have nothing to do with XBox live though, they aren't Microsoft products. Suppose someone doesn't care about online gaming? Why force them to buy XBox Live just to watch Netflix on their console.

ingramator said,

And no other console or device has an online service even remotely comparable with Xbox LIVE. You get what you pay for and if you've done PC, Wii, PS3 or any of the handhold device gaming online you will know exactly what I'm talking about. For a pretty small price you are getting a premium service.

Premium services give you something in return for their premium prices. Xbox live gold does not. Xbox live gold just takes from you.

I took part in the beta for a month. Really awful selection and most of it is not HD. Actually just cancelled it today. The four free redbox rentals were nice.

I hope this is another sign that the next XBox is going to become another DVR offering from cable companies. Supposedly (again just based on leaked info that may not be final) the next XBox will have the capability to function as a DVR with 6 simultaneous stream recording and playback. If this is the case it could be that the next XBox will be offered by cable providers (they already have limited on demand partnerships with Verizon, Comcast, and DishNetwork) as a complete gaming/cable/media services device. They've already piloted a subscription program where the customer pays $99 initially and $15/month for XBox live services for two years. There are many benefits for this for both Microsoft and the cable companies as more and more homes with gaming systems are also using them to access internet streaming services.

I used my XBox to watch the presidential debates and it had some live interactive polling that I thought yielded interesting results. I could easily see this platform being a solution that could provide interactivity for shows like American Idol and the like where they could get immediate feedback direct from the console without having to rely on people using a phone, pc, or tablet.

In the war for the next generation of consoles, MS is clearly in the lead in the media services department and I could see them wanting to put an XBox in as many homes to sell their ecosystem. Smartglass is a good start for interactivity between the console and devices/pcs, and having access to Skydrive from the console for pictures, videos, and potentially synchronizing everything makes a lot of sense to me. Neither Apple, Google, nor Sony, has this kind of breadth of services on a living room device, and to get cable providers to provide a subsidized XBox into the living rooms of cable subscribers opens a massive market that the others might not have the capabilities to access. Again. we don't know enough to properly judge if this is the route the cable companies and MS are going to take, but I for one am keeping my fingers crossed.

This is great news because I have been looking for a better alternative to Netflix. Netflix continues to have a lot of outage issues and not to mention they keep losing major movie companies like paramount so they can't show their movies. I am a beta tester for Redbox and their movie selection is not as deep as Netflix and Amazon yet, but I feel that over time, it will get better. Besides, they seem to get all the newer movies a couple weeks before netflix does too! It should do really well on the XBL!

Finally, I have it for 2 weeks now and had no use of it. Does anyone know how to use the 4 credit you get? Using you're credit card at the machine does not work. :-?

Redbox Instant will immediately and completely replace Netflix for me if they can actually offer relevant movies. And by relevant I mean, newly released (not weeks/months later), mainstream movies.

We will have to wait and see, if this new service is any good.

spacer said,
Redbox Instant will immediately and completely replace Netflix for me if they can actually offer relevant movies. And by relevant I mean, newly released (not weeks/months later), mainstream movies.

We will have to wait and see, if this new service is any good.

They have Justin Bieber Never Say Never....

But I agree. New release movies would be great.

The fact that they include DVDs with the streaming service has me sold. I'll definitely get it (or at least try it out for awhile). Netflix is so eager to get me and my wife back as a paying customer that between the 2 of us, if either has an itch to watch anything through Netflix streaming we can probably get a free month. Wait a year...get another 2 free months between the two of us. lol.

I liked Netflix when the service included the DVD rentals. Now-a-days I have 3 RedBox kiosks just down the street from me. My mailbox is actually in the opposite direction of leaving my neighborhood so the RedBox kiosks are more convenient than my mail box .

Just signed up to be part of the beta. Hope i get it. Been waiting for this and hope its a good rival to Netflix. Been getting really tired of Netflix. Between infrequent updates, miss matched episodes, duplicate episodes, missing episodes...well, like I said. Getting tired of Netflix.

Can you post a screenshot of what they offer? I did not like the fact that they want you to sign up without even showing a preview of what is out there to stream. I would expect the very same items in a box to be available to stream...plus what used to be in the box.

Rohdekill said,
Can you post a screenshot of what they offer? I did not like the fact that they want you to sign up without even showing a preview of what is out there to stream. I would expect the very same items in a box to be available to stream...plus what used to be in the box.

Not a very wide selection for streaming, but it is still in Beta. Just sign up and do the 1 month trial. Just like Netflix, they will ask for your CC info and you can cancel at anytime. No charges will be made to your CC.