Blockbuster Partnering with Tivo

Blockbuster has announced a partnership with once-dominant Tivo to distribute videos via Tivo’s established service. Blockbuster has been looking for an edge against arguably the biggest giant in the mail-distributed video arena – Netflix. Netflix already offers video downloads and some on-demand video to XBox 360’s as well as to Roku boxes and some Blu-Ray players. Blockbuster’s deal is the first to offer rentals through Tivo.

Blockbuster shares have falling precipitously of late, as their market model doesn’t seem able to compete with Netflix’s broad offerings of movies. Only time will tell if Blockbuster, and Tivo (whose share price is also stalling) can make a decent turnaround.

Blockbuster has stated pricing starts at $1.99 for rentals (up to $3.99) and that to purchase movies will cost anywhere from $14.99 on up. Purchased movies through the Tivo service will include DRM which makes the movies only available on the Tivo they are downloaded to.

As the market for purchased DVD’s declines, both Blockbuster and Netflix will have to adjust their market models accordingly to keep up. Currently Netflix is showing regular growth, but as other companies jockey for positions in the market, expect more offerings like Blockbuster’s partnership with Tivo.

Hear Me, I Want to Listen

Digital Rights Management (DRM) is a tool that doesn’t reflect the general preference of legal music downloaders. Before you read on, hoping that I will advocate for the free distribution of music, let me warn you: I’m a strong supporter of copyright and the protection of intellectual property; I want artists and distributors to make a decent living, but I’m frustrated by the current misuse of digital technology that attempts to thwart illegal distribution. In practice, DRM makes creates compatibility problems that make it excessively difficult, and in most cases, impossible, to listen to music that has been purchased online.

[Read more...]