1/19/2013

Verizon Redbox Instant (Bzzagent)

I was offered a 30 day trial membership to Verizon's new program, Redbox Instant, thanks to Bzzagent recently. I rent DVDs from the Redbox kiosks often so I thought, why not? The selection in the kiosks is usually alright. They have a fewer newer releases, several older movies, and now they even have game rentals available.



The rentals are a little over a dollar a day. All you have to do is use a credit or debit card at any Redbox kiosk location around your town and you can pick any of the movies, both blu-ray and regular, that are available. Not all kiosks have the same movies and the reason for this is because you can return your DVD rental to ANY kiosk. Many of these big red kiosks are located at Mc Donalds, Walgreens, Walmart, your local grocery store, gas stations, and more. How convenient right?



About the online membership

Like I said, I was allowed to try out the program for free. I also got 4 FREE DVD rentals of my choice! After the trial ended, I was to be charged $8 a month. Doesn't sound too bad right? Well, that's what I said at first. 

Opening an account was very easy and quick. I didn't only want to watch movies on my computer-I wanted to be able to watch them on my tablet and my fiance's Playstation 3 as well.  Downloading the app onto my tablet wasn't so easy though. At first, the program kept saying that it could not be downloaded to my tablet. I kept getting error messages. So, I simply restarted my tablet and tried again. Finally, it worked. I was unable to download it to my fiance's PS3 though. (Another thing that irritated me. You can watch Netflix, Crackle, YouTube, and other movie channels on PS3, so why not this one??) keep in mind the program is still in the beta stage.....I kept telling myself this...

I was excited to try and watch my first movie. I started looking through what appeared to a pretty big library of movies and picked one. It wouldn't play. Was there a problem with my tablet or the app? No. It would not work because the movie I picked was only able to rent or buy, not stream for free through my subscription. 
Not cool.  

So I tried to find another one that I wanted to view and the same problem. I got slightly irritated. Then I noticed at the top, there were tabs that said Subscription, At Kiosk, and Rent/Buy. So I clicked on Subscription. My huge library of choices quickly shrank. There were hardly any newer releases available for streaming. I searched through the entire library and did notice that were some okay older movies that I had already seen and wouldn't mind seeing again. I picked one and hit Watch Now. The movie needed to load for a few seconds, which I guess is similar to watching movies on YouTube...The movie eventually started but then it stalled and had to buffer again and again and again and again. Isn't the program supposed to be INSTANT?

Then I started getting error messages again. I just figured perhaps too many people were on the internet and the connection was slow or something like that? It was late, so I just called it night and thought I'd just give it a try the next day. 

Long story short, I was eventually able to watch a few movies without it stalling, but many of them did. I didn't like that one bit. My fiance' was so annoyed that he refused to watch anymore films through the program for the rest of the trial. 

We were thankful for the free DVD rentals and used those up quickly. 

Let me sum all this up:

Worst things about this program:
  • limited selection of movies available for streaming
  • rentals and purchases online are slightly overpriced
  • movies kept needing to load
  • no tv shows available 

Best things about this program:
  • Many older horror flicks available
  • you can search and locate rentals that you actually DO want to see at kiosks around town
I used up my trial period and actually cancelled my subscription 2 days before it ended because I absolutely did not want them to charge us for a monthly subscription to a program that was not as great as we'd hoped it would be. 

***DISCLAMER: This review is entirely my own opinion and I was not compensated in anyway to write this review.