Comcast And Blockbuster Team Up To Make Us Wonder Why They've Teamed Up

from the hey,-Comcast,-you-have-a-fat-pipe dept

It seems like Comcast is a bit confused about the technology that it offers to its customers, which involves a generally fat broadband pipe to users, through which they can access all sorts of content, including on demand videos. So, you might think that if Comcast were to team up with a company like Netflix or Blockbuster, it would be to deliver streaming content. Nope. Apparently Comcast has done a deal with Blockbuster to deliver DVDs by mail. That’s literally what the two companies are calling the product: “DVDsByMail.” It’s not like this hasn’t been done for ages by both Netflix and Blockbuster. It’s not clear what Comcast brings to the table here other than the “um… why?” factor it adds by wondering why Comcast is involved in something that doesn’t involved delivering content over its own network, but using the US Postal Service’s “network” instead.

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Companies: blockbuster, comcast

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Comments on “Comcast And Blockbuster Team Up To Make Us Wonder Why They've Teamed Up”

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MrWilson says:

It seems like Blockbuster is just continuing to use its “pay for the privilege” strategy. They paid the Weinsteins for an “exclusive deal” (that just meant Netflix bought their titles from Costco instead of getting them directly) and now the deal with Warner Bros for their 28 day lead on Netflix and Redbox. The fallout from Blockbuster’s DVDs-in-the-mail program came about because they spent so much on advertising to try to steal Netflix’s customers that they couldn’t support all the free rentals they’d promised. Considering that every time Blockbuster tries to innovate, it’s done through paying some company a lot of money, I won’t be surprised when this fails also.

Hex (profile) says:

This might be a little off-topic

And I’m not sure how relevant this is outside of New Zealand, but isn’t it possible that renting movies is cheaper than pirating them?

A good quality rip of a movie is going to be 2-4GB, assuming the movie is 4 GB, and depending which ISP you’re with, thats around about $8-15 NZD of bandwidth, not taking in to consideration the cost of petrol or the general effort of going out to rent a DVD, you can rent a new release for about $3…

Then again, NZ have to wait like half a year or so before the DVDs end up over here, and our selection of movies is pretty arse…

darryl says:

why attack everyones business models?

Do you have access to the market studies, or research into what potential customers want, do you know that alot of people in the US have SLOW internet connections, that some people would want the phsical copy of the DVD so they can play it in their DVD player.

Some people might not want to download it, or they might not be able to, they are also able to plan a few days ahead, do they can buy a movie, and watch it when it arrives.

Some people even get in their cars, and drive to the video shop, and rent or buy movies and drive home again and watch them, and drive back the next day to return it.

Does not sound like much of a business model, but it works, and have for a long time.

You seem to think that the ONLY consumers on the planet are just like you, it appears that you cannot see that other people have different needs and requirements than you do.

You seem to think that if you cannot ‘game’ the business model, its a ‘bad’ model.

Your always on the attack, I dont know why you pick on specific business models, but you take a quick look and do your best to shoot it down.

Without looking at anything like a big picture, you are happy to deny services to clients that might find it valuable for them.

“because you dont think its a good idea”, not that you actually know, you have no idea about the market surveys, market research, or the benifit to the client who may want that service.

Im hoping one day you will say something positive, and give a clear explination as to why you think its a bad model, not just that they can do other things so why not just do that.

But its ok for a musician to sell T-shirts to make money instead of selling music, but its not ok, for a service provider to provide other services ?? go figure..

I think you need to take your blinkers off and take a look at the bigger picture.. Mike..

darryl says:

Re: Re: why attack everyones business models?

Or the part where Comcast’s business has nothing to do with sending DVDs in the mail?

I Guess you did miss that part, Given your inablilty to understand, I guess so.

The entire article is about Comcast, and what they ARE DOING, (“ARE DOING”, is not *NEVER*)

I would think that comcast is a service privider, and therefore are interested in providing services to clients.
(now there is a business model).

Sure, the primary service comcast provides is digital information via internet connections, but what is stopping them from providing other services, they are after all a “SERVICE PROVIDER”.

So they look at other services they could provide, and they found a content provider to work with so they provide the service for that content, (and convienient billing), and blockbuster provides the content.

Its not a complicated business model, Im surprised that you think a company should only do what they started to do and nothing else, and not expand their products or services to meet customers needs.

There are 3 basic groups of people, one group makes things happen, the second group can work out what is happening, and the third group say “what happened?”.

People who run successful companies like blockbuster, or Comcast the those that make things happen, I guess you fall into one of the other two groups, It seem like most of the articles and comments on here are from the group that says “What HAPPEND?”

Michael (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: why attack everyones business models?

“I would think that comcast is a service privider, and therefore are interested in providing services to clients.”

Ok, but Comcast is a cable and internet service provider. They just made a deal that seems to use neither of these services. It is a bit like going to McDonalds for an oil change.

Doesn’t it seem odd that a company that provides internet service is teaming up with a movie rental company to not stream movies? In addition, they appear to be working on a project that Blockbuster already does!?

Derek Kerton (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: why attack everyones business models?

Stop, Darryl Maguire.

You had me at “successful companies like blockbuster”

Clearly, you don’t read the business section. What HAPPEND to the successful company? Here’s the answer:

Hephaestus (profile) says:

Re: why attack everyones business models?

“I think you need to take your blinkers off and take a look at the bigger picture”

I was going to go after you on a line by line basis. Screw that.

Comcast and the other cable companies have a ton of cash on hand and are making the wrong decisions. The bigger picture is NBCU, newsday, and this deal are all episodic of monopolies about to fail. They have reached their limits of growth and branching out into similar industries. They are looking for short term gains that will lead to their failures.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: why attack everyones business models?


Here’s the problem. When you spend millions to start up a new business plan, you should always forecast considerably into the future. Even though there may still be many people who use their DVDs right now, that number is dropping every day. The trend is to download or stream, and that is growing steadily. People are scratching their heads because this seems to be an investment in technology and trends that are on the final stages of their lives. In five to ten years, the vast majority of young adults will be downloading and streaming all the time and NOT using DVD players. So, this is why you are seeing so many negative responses.

Derek Kerton (profile) says:

Re: Perfect what you have.

“Now maybe they eventually plan to release something similar to netflix streaming…”

You mean something like Comcast OnDemand? Yeah, maybe they eventually plan to do that, say, in December of 2005.

vastrightwing (profile) says:

I'm selling all of my tangible media

Interesting that new businesses are starting where tangible media is being used. This weekend, I will be selling all of my tangible media (ie. CDs, DVDs, VHS tapes, cassettes, 8-track tapes, etc.) because it just sits in my basement taking up space. 1) After I’ve seen a movie once or twice, that’s it for me. I never watch them again. I imagine that many people do the same thing. It’s good to be able to rent a DVD now & then, but I find streaming so much more convenient & cheaper than going out to buy or rent physical media. Good luck Comcast… oh, I mean xfinity.

Nomo Blockbuster says:

Blockbuster hasn't got a clue

Ever since Blockbuster made that horrific proposal to buy now defunct Circuit City in 2008, its priorities, direction and overall usefulness have diminished to the point where Blockbuster is unable to pay its debt on time, posts worse-than-expected results quarter after quarter and faces the public-desired fate of liquidation into oblivion.

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