After months of beta testing, Target has just launched its new on-demand digital video service to the public.
It's called Target Ticket, and at launch it boasts over 30,000 individual titles. Many of these titles are available to either buy or rent, and Target says the lowest price starts at $0.99. Every video has to be paid for individually - a la iTunes of Amazon Instant Video. There's no subscription plan offered that would turn Target Ticket into a Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu competitor at the moment.
Target seems to have brought the goods with this one - at least offering the same high-caliber content that competitors like iTunes offer. We're talking major movie releases, next-day TV episodes from shows like The Walking Dead and The Big Bang Theory. Target Ticket also lets users buy whole seasons or individual episodes of popular premium content from the likes of HBO and Showtime. At launch, it's available on a multitude of devices including Android and iOS, Roku, Xbox LIVE, and Samsung's line of internet-ready devices. Target says that more availability is coming soon.
“Many of our guests told us that streaming and viewing videos is complicated, so we created Target Ticket to simplify the experience,” said Anne Stanchfield, Target's divisional merchandise manager of entertainment. “Target Ticket will help guests who are looking for a kid-safe, easy-to-use service that mirrors what they have come to expect from Target’s entertainment offerings – a premium selection of the newest titles plus exclusive content, all at an affordable price.”
And that family-friendly aspect of the service is one that Target Ticket could use to separate itself from a crowded field of digital video providers. Whether it'll help their cause is yet to be seen, but they are pushing it pretty hard. Through a partnership with Common Sense Media, one of Target Ticket's noted features is extensive reviews and ratings guides and built-in filters for parents to use to make sure their kids aren't buying the latest Game of Thrones boob-fest. Target Ticket also has support for multiple user profiles.
Other incentives to use Target Ticket over other similar services include a 5% off bonus for Target REDcard holders and "exclusive to Target" bonus footage attached to some content.
Still, Target Ticker enters a ring full of big, scary, established fighters. And that ring is filling up fast. You can check out Target Ticket here