Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Latest Retail Vending Maching Technology Comes To Roosevelt Island - Blockbuster $1 DVD Kiosk Appears At Gristedes But Did Not Work For Me

Blockbuster $1 A Night DVD Vending Machine At Roosevelt Island's Gristedes

I had not been in the Roosevelt Island Gristedes for a while until last weekend and was pleasantly surprised when I walked into the store to see one of the new Blockbuster DVD $1 a night vending machines. A store employees told me that the kiosk has been in place for several weeks.

Who would have thought that the Roosevelt Island Gristedes would be in the technological forefront of the video rental business? According to recent NY Times article on video vending machine business:

... The kiosks hold about 500 DVDs and focus on new mainstream releases.

Customers follow a series of touch-screen prompts to use the kiosks, which vend from slots on the side. Once a selection is made, the customer swipes a credit card through the reader. The card is charged a dollar (and tax) for each DVD rented; the charges for additional days, if any, are added when discs are returned. The charge for lost DVDs is $25.

“If you make renting affordable and fun, people are going to watch a whole lot more movies than they did before,” Mr. Lowe said.

According to Video Business:
... With NCR’s advanced technology, these machines will dispense a wide array of DVDs and could offer digital downloading in the future, all under the Blockbuster brand,” said Blockbuster CEO Jim Keyes in a statement today....
Of course, when I walked into the Gristedes, the Blockbuster DVD vending machine was on the fritz and not working.

It's a good idea and depending upon the movies available, I would probably use it although I hope that some of the Southtown retailers such as Duane Reade install their own DVD vending machines for the convenience of those living in Riverwalk and everyone who uses the nearby F Train Subway Station.