BlockBuster Android Application In The Works


I feel bad for BlockBuster, I truly do. Most of it is for selfish nostalgic reasons: I can remember walking to the local shopping center with parents and/or buddies, finding a VHS – or later on DVD – bringing it home, popping it in, and watching a good PG-13 movie. At the time I thought my mom was ruining my life for not allowing me to watch Rated R movies. But luckily- I also had friends with those little “black boxes” that got everything Rated R and a couple levels beyond if ya know wh-

Sorry, back on topic. BlockBuster is $1 billion in debt but they’re not done trying to reach their hand out of the grave that Netflix help dig – they’re now offering On-Demand video on T-Mobile’s HTC HD2 and will soon be launching an Android application.


BlockBuster signed an agreement with Warner Brothers and Time Warner that will deliver content through the BlockBuster application a month before competitors like Netflix and Redbox have access. What that will cost them? I have no clue. What that will mean with handsets that deliver HDMI-Video out? Probably nothing if Google TV becomes a reality you could just snag the application on there!

The move is definitely a good one though as BlockBuster needs to do some forward thinking, innovating in an area that won’t soon go the way of the VHS. If you ask me, Netflix should be similarly concerned as the connected home becomes more and more of a reality and within 5 years I’m thinking some sweeping changes will occur. Why get a DVD in the mail when you can download a movie online and watch it directly on your TV? To be fair, Netflix IS doing some of this stuff now.

But BlockBuster? I’m not sure if they can survive, especially in the face of competition that has zoomed past them with more modern solutions to the home-movie-goers needs. Luckily we have awesome readers who know EXACTLY what the fate of BlockBuster will be. Too little too late if you ask me.

[polldaddy poll=2955821]

[Via CNN Money]

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. Goodbye and good riddance

  2. I think it will be interesting to see what will happen about them as they are not that bad a shop.

  3. i used to work for the distribution center …….they are hanging on by a thread.

  4. Their old business model is dead. Their infrastructure is built on the revenues made on late fees. They need to close all their physical outlets and layoff most of their workforce to remain in business as a much smaller, more efficient, though heavily in debt, centralized operation. They stand a small chance then. It’s a tough decision and it won’t be the same company, but otherwise they have no chance in hell.

  5. Who voted regain prominence? Make yourself known so we can laugh at your delusional optimism!

  6. I hope they survive because I prefer using them to Netflix. Why? Because there’s a Blockbuster store less than 3 miles from my house and I take the movies I get in the mail back to the store instead of mailing them back and exchange them for movies from the store. The ones I dropped off get mailed back for me and two more arrive in the mail two days later. We always have movies to watch and never have to wait.

  7. “We always have movies to watch and never have to wait.”

    Me too, Netflix on demand.

  8. blockbuster is just too expensive.i pay $9 a month for rent 1 movie on the HD2 is i think $4.that means with only 2 movies from blockbuster i already spent 8 bucks.they should change their name to walletbuster.VAYA CON DIOS BLOCKBUSTER.

  9. I didn’t realize they were even still in business.

  10. @boriqua2000

    The rates on netflix and blockbuster are the exact same.

    the only difference is that with blockbuster you can go to a store and get a hard copy if it isn’t online yet, and with netflix there are slightly more online movies then blockbuster online.

  11. I’m a Blockbuster Store Manager in Houston, TX. If Blockbuster folds, it will cripple the entertainment industry. Why do you think all the major movie studios filed suit against Redbox last year? Its because they don’t pay the studios the revenue share that we have to do to run our business ethically and legally. The reason you pay such low prices at Redbox and Netflix is because they purchase their movies wholesale from distributers and big box retailers like Wal-Mart and then rent them out to the public (ever read that FBI Warning at the beginning of each and every DVD you put in? It says NOT to do what they do). So… when you spend the extra dollar or two at Blockbuster, you’re not only getting personalized service, recommendations and (hopefully) a smiling face, but you’re also helping support the movie studios to continue to bring the entertainment to you. They don’t make much money on the movies when they’re in theaters… they make the bulk off rental revenue and DVD sales… which they don’t get from Redbox and Netflix. That’s why Warner Bros. has made a deal with us to give us exclusive rights to rent their big titles for the first 28 days they’re released. The first of those titles is the Blind Side which released this week and Sherlock Holmes which comes out next week. You won’t find either of those through Redbox or Netflix for a month after their release dates.

  12. @hugh u better check to make sure that store is still there bc the one by my job is selling everything and closing (leaving only 2 in Manhattan) and so is the one closest to home…the good news is I’m stocking up on used blurays ($10 each)

  13. I don’t rent at Blockbuster much but at Hollywood Video instead and now they’re closing too. The day of the brick and mortar rental stores is coming to an end. The sad thing is that there is a lot of content that won’t be on VOD for a long time if ever.

  14. Hmm, the author seems to have different memories of Blockbuster then I do. I remember outragous late fees (not mine, but of friends). Empty shelves where new releases were. Cocky staff. Putting returned movies in the box outside and not having them checked in the same day, thus rendering them late. And my favorite: I went to a Blockbuster one day looking for DVDs to rent (about a year after DVD was released and players were no longer considered bleeding edge) and had a Blockbuster staffer look at me like I just stepped out of a space ship.

    Lucky for me Netflix was right around the corner. I signed up the day I found out about it and I’ve not stepped foot in a Blockbuster for over 10 years. And I don’t plan on every doing so again.

    I think their past has come back to haunt them. And their lack of vision has destroyed the giant. Heck, as a little side story. I remember the first house I bought. It was held up because of a lean that was put on it because of late fees from Blockbuster to the ex-husband of the lady that was selling it. A late movie should not prevent someone from selling their house.

    Good-bye Blockbuster. I hope you had fun, but it’s now closing time.

  15. Oh, I almost forgot. Movies that were censored to meet the Blockbuster seal of approval.
    When I rent a movie. I want the actual movie. Not a watered down version that Blockbuster thinks I should see.

    Why the public puts up with Blockbuster I will never know.

  16. Hey Nic, You might not find them at Redbox or Netflix, but will find them for free about a thousand and one other places… oh wait a second they’re both already there (and have been for weeks). Bye Bye blockbuster.

  17. What that will cost them?
    Probably nothing more than it always has. It is Netflix and Redbox as you wrote and just Netflix and Redbox that have negotiated a deal with Warner to wait 28 days before renting out movies. In exchange for making their customers wait they are getting cheaper purchase costs from Warner Brothers.
    You can go to any video store, Blockbuster included, to get the new releases when they are released. Netflix and Redbox make you wait because they want more profits.

  18. If that statement about Netflix skirting royalties was true… they would have been crushed like a bug a long time ago.

  19. Nic,

    My advice to you buddy? Revamp the resume & start looking for a new job. Blockbuster is DEAD & nobody will save that pitiful franchise. Let Blockbuster burn. BB has ripped off consumers with watered down movie versions, bad customer service, broken disk, scratched disks, & excessive late fees for far too long. It’s about time we put this pathetic franchise out of business.

    My take:

    It won’t have a single impact on the entertainment industry of other retailers that you can buy from. Hasn’t blockbuster paid attention to Netflix(BB killer), iTunes (which I can rent with no hassles by the way or go to the libray & download), Amazon, Hollywood Video, Movie Trading Company(which has better deals, better customer service by the way), & plenty of up and coming challengers to the business. Blockbuster was great in the 80’s, but it’s 2010 for Pete’s sake! I can find plenty of BB alternatives that will allow me to rent movies.

    It’s funny how BB employees think they are so important. Honestly, their not. You don’t think Gamestop could do a better job? They got the locations. I’m sure that Redbox will get a settlement & keep prices low. I’m sure Walmart could create a rental company & definite put BB out of business as well.

    The fact is that BB days are over. Just accept it & move on. This is one app, that I & many Android customers will pass up. Next?

  20. You were laughing about Pier1 too last year. Look where they are now!!!

  21. blockbuster’s demise and impossiblity of ever returning is mainly due to the customer experience that it provided during the 80’s and 90’s when it was the king of the rental industry. Lots of people dont even want to deal with BB because of the way they were treated as customers. Unless blockbuster can find a way to look up every late fee it ever charged and give that $ back, or allow customers to use the $ as credit in a blockbuster store, the majority of its old customers will NEVER EVER return. This should be a lesson to all of those companies who enjoy a position similiar to that of blockbuster–you may be king now but if you treat your customers wrong its only a matter of time before your gone, and no one wants you anymore.
    Blockbuster is the abusive husband. Netflix is the guy that comes along and treats us right. Now that we know what its like to be treated right we never want to deal w/Blockbuster again. Peace beyeeotch…..

  22. Android application?!? How ludicrous! Blockbuster is so desperate it’s not even funny.

    Blockbuster’s business has been anything but ethical and legal. I left the company as a customer service rep many years ago and I, as well as many reps and managers I’m sure, know first-hand from customers complaining about late fees going away and then being renamed ‘restocking fee’ and then reemerging altogether five years later that Blockbuster does not deserve to live and that those still loyal to Blockbuster are stuck in the 1900s.

    I’m sure many Blockbuster customers will not be able to find copies of Blind Side or Sherlock Holmes even though Blockbuster has access to them. By the time the four-week advantage vests, Netflix and Redbox will instantly make up the revenue that Blockbuster made in that time. The inventory and availability at Blockbuster stores and distribution centers is just too low to satisfy customer demand. You don’t have to be an economist to understand this.

    If you, Nic, are a manager in the city housing the company’s headquarters, if you want to save yourself and many others the trouble, go to Corporate at (A Nightmare on) Elm Street and plead with the company to close its doors for good. If anything, Blockbuster’s closure will not cripple the entertainment industry, but rather allow it to flourish once more.

    Blockbuster is sinking faster than the Titanic so abandon ship!

  23. Skype is on android and we can use with with verizon 3g network!

  24. keyes will turn the company around so if your small invester dont trust the hype the big boys will always prey on 95 percent of the cattle i mean people who invest in the market you just cannot hand some one a great iq

  25. Okay so I read through this article and even got through all the comments left by others. The whole way people get content is changing. BB has its place and can survive if they change. They will need to close locations and become leaner to stay in business. My opinion is that in place of the closed locations they offer a red box kiosk alternative, and expand rapidly their online catalog. I switched to Netflix years ago and until 2 months ago I hadn’t been inside a BB for probably close to 7 years. The reason is that I wanted a new release that was not at three different red box locations I went to. Plain and simple convenience is what consumers are looking for. Customer service was better that I have ever received and late policy and price was explained in the simplest of ways. Netflix has much to worry about as the USPS looks for ways to cut Post office locations and stand alone mailboxes. The big issue is that the Movie industry doesn’t want to become like the Music industry. Meaning that digital downloads mean money wasted to produce the film, because it destroys profits. In a perfect world people would pay, but most people downloading movies are not going to the apple store to do so. Thats why movie theaters have put a focus on 3D technology to change the viewing experience and give people a reason to come back to locations. Until business and consumers find a balance between product quality and price this debate will continue. Each one of these companies have their purpose its really about price, service, and convenience.

  26. I love using netflix on my 360. Now if they would come out with a phone version it would be awesome.

  27. Block buster on android and beyound could be a big plus in keeping them in the game…I voted that the will stay in the game by the way to that dude above who doubts them. Could be wrong but-I think they have a chance…think about it BB on the new android phones and tablets (if they make BB for tablets)coming out…thats cool y0

  28. to say that blockbuster will “cripple the entertainment industry” if it folds is extremely ignorant. it really wont.

  29. Nikki, your absolutely right! Thats just a bunch of corporate mumbo jumbo, yeah, that guy must work for Blockbuster. I dont know why they didnt come out with what Netflix and Redbox are doing a long time ago. Get with the times Blockbuster, stop trying to be all goodie goodie!

  30. Who’s the gay fag that deleted my post? Only you can prevent forrest fires. She’ll be coming around the mountain when she comes. Mentos isn’t a freshmaker, but it take a whole pack to make your face fresher, dusche bag!!! Hey Brian comes in and he looks like a dusche bag, hey Brian, why are you bringing me down man? Dont bring me down, ahhhhhhh haaaaaaaaa, im watching gay porn right now, this guy is totally shoving a blockbuster dvd case right up another guys rectum!!!!!

  31. Interesting fact about Steve Jobs…he doesnt like outdated technology and design, ahhhhhhhh haaaaaaaaa!!!

  32. Keyes has not turned and will not turn Blockbuster around. Once the shareholders realize that at the next shareholders meeting on May 26th, Blockbuster will not stand a chance.

  33. I believe Blockbuster can regain prominence. The reason why is because Netflix doesn’t show new releases in fact you have to wait 2 to 3 months after a movie is released. Whereas Blockbuster allows you to watch new releases and it allows you to watch in Hi-Def unlike Netflix they pick and choose what device will shows in Hi-Def.

  34. It seems like everyone is remembering the old walk-in BB. They do have a mail/online store front that nobody has mentioned yet that is modeled exactly like Netflix, only better; its also the same price.

    Yeah I think they will regain prominence. For the following reason they have a clear advantage.

    – $9.99 for one DVD out at a time, unlimited rentals, up to $23.99 for four DVDs out at a time.
    – BB gets movies 28 days before Netflix, they signed a nifty little deal with movie studios.
    – You can, but don’t have to use the mail, you can walk-in and return your movies that way, and take one out or get online and queue up another.
    – On demand access instantly through Toshiba and Samsung internet enabled Blue-ray players, Samsung internet enabled TV’s and Home Theater systems and the list is growing; oh and through a Tivo DVR, Xbox 360, or download to your desktop PC or laptop.
    – or via portable Archos device, soon Android and Motorola phones.
    – They also allow for download storage rather than streaming only, meaning you can download to your favorite portable device and watch anytime you like.

  35. Many seem to be comparing the old store front BB. BB has come along way since then.

    I think Netflix will be playing catchup to BB.

    – same pricing plan, $9.99 for one DVD out at a time to $23.99 for four DVDs out
    – Online subscribers are entitled to two to four free in-store rentals per month and can return mailed movies straight to local stores as well; or just use the mail.
    – instant view/on demand to internet enabled devices; Toshiba Blu-ray players, Samsung Blu-ray players, Samsung home theater system, Samsung LED, LCD or plasma TVs
    – View on your PC, or on the go with your Windows laptop or netbook
    – view on portable Archos devices, Android, and Motorola, mobile phones. also TiVo DVR, and Xbox 360.
    – offline file viewing so you can download and watch at any time without an internet connection requirement for playback

  36. UPDATE: Blockbuster failed in bankruptcy proceedings and is now up for sale. Former director Carl Icahn may bid for the company and appears to have money to burn having lost $100+ million from Blockbuster’s stock and has bought over $100 million in Blockbuster debt. He may pay as much as $300 million more to buy the company. The company is not worth near that much and should be liquidated rather than sold. Just ask Summit Distribution LLC…

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