Redbox, Verizon announces video service to compete with Netflix


(CBS) - Redbox and Verizon announced Monday a video rental service to rival Neflix.

The service would let customers combine the Redbox's physical rental locations with Verizon's online streaming and downloading services. Rollout of the new service is expected in the second half of 2012.

Few details of the venture were outlined, except to reiterate the convenience of offering physical locations with streaming service. Pricing is also unspecified. And whether or not the membership payment plan will be inclusive or separate are not clear yet. In comparison, Netflix offers separate mail-in and online streaming services.

"The joint venture will combine the accessibility and value of Redbox with Verizon's vision for a borderless lifestyle - where consumers easily accomplish what they want or need to do, on their terms, through the power of the network," said Bob Mudge, president of Verizon consumer and mass business markets.

"Together, we are erasing old technology boundaries, freeing people to spontaneously enjoy the entertainment they want, whenever they choose, using the devices and media they prefer, at home or away."

The big question is not in the service, but the content. Netflix has the largest library of titles - double that of competitors of Amazon Prime, Hulu Plus or Blockbuster.

If the Verizon/Redbox service secures enough quality content, it could prove to be a true rival for Netflix.