Over the past holiday weekend I finally had some time to relax. I don't get much downtime so when the moment arrived I had to ask myself, " what do I like to do when I have free time? ". The first thing that came to mind was 'movies'. We (my girlfriend and I) decided we wanted to watch the new movie, Tempest, directed by Julie Taymor.
Long story short, I looked everywhere for this obscure film. Netflix did not have it. Redbox did not have it. My girlfriend was calling every Blockbuster in a ten mile radius and they did not have it! I spent about 45 minutes on this fruitless pursuit.
Eventually, I realized I could probably just download a digital version online. Of course I could! I didn't even know you could download a movie from Amazon, but you can, and I did. And what a piece of garbage it was (which has nothing to do with this story)!
The point is, resources are getting ever more expensive and physical retailers (in my opinion) have become more and more disappointing (they never have what we're looking for). Randomly searching for something can waste a lot of gasoline, time, and energy. Why not just turn on the computer, and download what you want.
NPD Group monitors trends in rentals and guess what they found out? That's right, people don't like to drive to Blockbuster! In fact, more people rent from Redbox, probably because it's closer (in most cases) and it's cheaper (come on folks, $1 versus $5). Less surprising is that even more people simply just download their movies.
Senior vice president and industry analysis for The NPD Group Russ Crupnick had this to say about the trend:
“The movie-rental market is clearly undergoing a sea change, as consumers become better equipped to access on-demand and streamed movies and are more comfortable with available delivery options”
But old habits die hard and the movie rental business has not completely transformed. 37% of rentals go to Redbox, 31% go to digital and streaming formats, and the remainder go to physical retailers (like Blockbuster). I'm sure this will continue to change as consumers become more comfortable renting online.