RUMOR: Blockbuster developing Apple TV-like set top box

Blockbuster “is developing a set-top device for streaming films directly to TV sets and is expected to announce the offering sometime this month,” Andrew Wallenstein reports for The Hollywood Reporter.

Wallenstein reports, “Blockbuster declined comment, but a spokeswoman for the company said: ‘We’re talking to numerous companies and vendors about products, services, alliances and initiatives that can help us achieve our mission to transform Blockbuster into a company that provides access to media content across multiple channels — from our stores, by mail, through kiosks, through downloading, through portable content-enabled devices– so it’s not surprising that there are rumors out there.’

“The device would join a growing roster of devices that aim to bring broadband video to the living room, including Apple TV,” Wallenstein reports.

“Blockbuster knows all too well the importance of online film rentals. When Apple said in January that iTunes would adopt a rental model, it sent Blockbuster’s stock plummeting 17% to an all-time closing low,” Wallenstein reports.

Full article here.

Very little chance of success at this late date; not with Apple’s iTunes, iPod and iPhone so firmly established. Apple TV is awesome, by the way – and you can buy it today!

33 Comments

  1. It’ll be interesting to see if Apple can establish itself within the movie rental market. I think right now, everyone and their dog thinks of iTunes when it comes to music.

    But Blockbuster and Netlfix both have tons more name recognition today when it comes to movie rentals, and they could possibly do better sales than Apple even with far inferior hardware and software delivering it as we all roll our eyes.

    What would be kind of cool in my view is if Apple TV could be made to work with Blockbuster and Netflix’s offerings somehow. We all know that Apple doesn’t make much money off of iTunes in proportion to its hardware sales anyway. A partnership like this would be the best of both worlds — Blockbuster and Hollywood get the revenue from rentals and Apple sell millions upon millions of Apple TVs.

    Just a thought . . .

  2. The only way it might work is if they give the box out for free, or with some type of subscription model. They do face a problem. Apple TV is already hear, so I don’t know how much this could work if they plan to sell the thing.

  3. Being able to rent movies over Apple TV is terrific but their selection (non-HD) is incredibly poor. They need at least 10 times the quantity they have now including a lot more of the lesser known titles.

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