Last time we mentioned Blockbuster -- on Friday, when CEO Jim Keyes was overheard lamenting the poor product Hollywood puts on its shelves -- Friends and strangers used the opportunity to bash the business model. Chief among the complaints: historically high rental prices, it ain't Netflix, time limits on rentals, it ain't Netflix, slow adaptation to digital distribution, it ain't Redbox, it ain't Netflix. Slowly, Blockbuster's been trying anything and everything to move into a future in which Blockbuster still exists -- from DVD rental kiosks to set-top box on-demand delivery to tinkering with pay plans -- but, so far, nothing's done much to convert the non-believers.
Which brings us to this morning's announcement:
Blockbuster Inc. (NYSE: BBI, BBI.B), a global leader in entertainment, and TiVo Inc. (NASDAQ: TIVO), the creator of and a leader in television services for digital video recorders (DVRs), today announced they are joining forces to deliver Blockbuster's vast library of premium digital movie titles directly to the television set via TiVo® DVRs.
BLOCKBUSTER OnDemand, featuring content to both buy and rent, will be integrated into TiVo Series2™, Series3™, TiVo HD, and TiVo HD XL DVRs. The move by two leaders in home entertainment will make it even easier for all broadband connected TiVo subscribers to download Blockbuster's content and enjoy a complete television entertainment experience on their individual schedules using TiVo, the best and most comprehensive single solution for delivery and simple, intuitive navigation of broadband, broadcast, and cable content -- all from one remote control.
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Of the deal, announced this a.m. on the TiVo site as well, Keyes says that "ultimately, our vision is to work with TiVo so that their subscribers can access movies not only through our OnDemand service but also from our stores and through our by-mail service as well. Regardless of a film's availability -- through VOD or on DVD -- we want to work with TiVo to provide their subscribers unprecedented access to movie content."