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Netflix vs Blockbuster

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Stephen Orr, Jun 14, 2007.

  1. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Well-Known Member

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    For years, I was a loyal Blockbuster customer, as I have a store about 3/4 of a mile from my house. However, as I get older, my need to rush out and rent a new release on its first day on the shelves has significantly diminished. The same thing has happened with going to the movies -- I only go to things that I feel cannot be appreciated on anything less than the big screen.

    Along comes Netflix, with online renting/mailing. I sign up about two years ago, and it fits my lifestyle pretty well. I did try Blockbuster's online service for a bit, but my experience was that most discs arrived scratched and dirty. Netflix, on the other hand, well, I haven't had any bad discs.

    Now, I have discovered the joy of Netflix instant streaming. I have a 46 in Sony Bravia and the other night, my wife and I watched one of our favorite older movies, "Down Periscope." The fill screen mode fit my TV just fine, and the quality of the picture, while a step below a DVD, was perfectly acceptable for a streaming movie.

    Using instant streaming, I've been able to sample movies that I just didn't want to invest time in to rent or watch (Team America - ugh), watch music concerts that I'd missed in the past, and see older Doctor Who episodes. Nice service.

    Now Blockbuster has announced a new pricing structure that undercuts Netflix. Is this enough to make me switch? No, for now. But how about you? What has been your experience?
     
  2. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Well-Known Member

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    I go to Blockbuster when I want to get good deals on used titles from a few months ago, but that's about all it's good for.

    I tried their ripoff of Netflix, and it stinks in comparison. Lots of movies were out of stock, there were way fewer titles available, it took way longer to get the movies in the mail, and the site was harder to use.

    Other than that, it was great, but maybe it's improved since then. For anyone who was familiar with Netflix, it was unacceptable.
     
  3. todbnla

    todbnla Well-Known Member

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    I have used both and really I have found that your local postal service effects their level of service and block buster has a tendency to be out of more online movies longer, at least in my area lately...

    BTW-I heard that NF website was down for a few days due to the brownouts in CA and I heard their stock just also took a big hit for the first time ever...who knows maybe BB will win this battle....did WM drop out of online rentals....?
     
  4. RolandL

    RolandL Well-Known Member

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    I have tried both and I think Blockbuster is the better deal - if you have a decent Blockbuster store near you.

    With Netflix I received a movie, watched it, then put in the mail and waited for the next movie to be mailed back.

    With Blockbuster I receive a movie, watch it, bring it to the Blockbuster store and pick out another movie while I'm waiting for another to arrive in the mail. I watch a lot more movies per month with Blockbuster for the same price as Netflix.
     
  5. Will_B

    Will_B Well-Known Member

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    Not anymore. Blockbuster just announced (2007.07.26) that the unlimited in-store exchanges are now severely limited:
    - 5 in-store exchanges per month if you are on the 3-out plan.
    - 3 in-store exchanges per month if you are on the 2-out plan.

    For a dollar less per month, you can drop the entire in-store exchange process. Or heck, just switch to Netflix - same price.

    For seven dollars more per month, you can have unlimited in-store exchanges just like you did before today.

    Basically, the incentive to visit Blockbuster physical stores is over.
     
  6. Qui-Gon John

    Qui-Gon John Well-Known Member

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    I'm a member and haven't heard this, at least not yet.

    My subscription plan on the web stie still shows "3 out at a time" and "unlimited in-store exchanges". Maybe they're going to grandfather long time customers.
     
  7. RolandL

    RolandL Well-Known Member

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    I just called my Blockbuster store and that 7/26 change is only for new customers.
     
  8. Jason_V

    Jason_V Well-Known Member

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    I can get two movies a week through Netflix on my one at a time plan. There have been no problems with service, something being out of stock of Netflix not having a title. I get what I want in the mail, watch it and send it back the next day. For those days I want to watch something but have no Netflix movie, the TiVO is overloaded with movies.

    I've had an aversion to Blockbuster for years now. I refuse to even step into a store.
     
  9. Will_B

    Will_B Well-Known Member

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    By now you're probably aware that is not so; Blockbuster has selectively grandfathered in only the fraction of customers who rarely rented movies. What percentage of their customers this represents they will not say, but people believe it may be about a third.

    Customers who rented regularly, i.e. with relatively quick turnarounds, are informed about 3 days before their next billing cycle would have begun that their subscription will not renew and they must select another plan: either buy a plan at the same price which provides limited in-store exchanges, or pay more for a plan that includes unlimited in-store exchanges.

    The tactic of only sending out these notices 3 days before each person's billing cycle has kept things relatively calm, since everyone holds onto the hope that they may be one of the rare "grandfathered" people (until they learn they are not).

    Still, although our house just got our notice that we won't be grandfathered in, we probably will sign up for a plan that costs the same but has limited in-store exchanges.

    After all, when we began using the service more than a year ago, there weren't any in-store exchanges at all. So it was an unexpected bonus when they added it, and it therefore can't be much of a disappointment that they've now taken it away.

    We'd consider switching to Netflix, but for the throttling.
     
  10. Qui-Gon John

    Qui-Gon John Well-Known Member

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    I got the message today and my month isn't up until 9/9. But I sent them a reply complaining that I wasn't grandfathered in and they sent me one back saying I would be.
     
  11. Will_B

    Will_B Well-Known Member

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    That's great! I don't like confrontation so I let it slide, and my housemates want to switch to Netflix. So we're staying with Blockbuster until one of those "Free Month of Netflix" postcards arrive or I find a similar online coupon.
     
  12. Fred333

    Fred333 Active Member

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    i think i definitely depends on what type of movie watcher you are. if you like to watch movies often then netflix is the way to go.
     

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