Source: Redbox Instant
Redbox Instant by Verizon has started its beta test a bit earlier than I'd expected. You can sign up for a chance to get into the beta now. They've also released apps for iOS and Android though they won't do you much good until you get an access code. The last time we talked about this new streaming service we were expecting a $6/month streaming only tier and an $8/month streaming plus four disk rental tier. As of now only the $8 plan is being advertised on the site. They're also promising a generous 1 month trial of the service once it launches. Beta testers presumably get a free ride during the test period. I've signed up to be a beta tester but haven't been accepted yet.
What we still don't know is how much content is available. For that we'll have to wait until I, or a friend of the blog, gets beta access (assuming there's no NDA). The service is going to live or die based on its content library so we're really still just guessing at this point. GigaOm has been following the story pretty closely and shared this video, featuring a very excited narrator who promises cutting edge features like high def full-screen movies right from your web browser! OH-EM-GEE what will they think of next?
I guess Redbox and Verizon are marketing to a very non-tech savvy audience. There's really not much in this video that gets me excited. An earlier promo video, which GigaOm writer Janko Roettgers called "somewhat obnoxious" was pulled by the company, so perhaps their marketing department is in beta as well. If anyone who reads the blog has managed to wrangle a beta invite, I'd love to hear your thoughts about the content selection. Read more of Peter Smith's TechnoFile blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Peter on Twitter at @pasmith. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.