Blockbuster to Stream to Blu-ray Players in ‘09

blockbuster ondemand

Blockbuster’s On Demand service, coming soon to Blu-ray

Blockbuster's CEO recently said the capability to stream the rental service's On Demand movies will be available on Blu-ray players in the first quarter of 2009.

Dec. 01, 2008 — by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

It was only a matter of time before this one appeared on the radar: Blockbuster streaming to Blu-ray devices.

The company hasn’t announced anything specific yet, but following the official launch of its MediaPoint set-top box product with 2Wire, the rental giant could be headed the way of its chief competitor, Netflix.

In an interview with E-Commerce Times, Blockbuster CEO Jim Keyes noted that the set-top box was just the first step for the company in getting its On Demand movies to other devices that people will have in their home theaters, including Blu-ray players as early as the first quarter of next year:

Jim Keyes: Right, we will have other offerings expanded from this capability. We’ll be able to put the same capability into a Blu-ray player. We’ll go into DVRs (digital video recorders), game consoles, etc., just as others are doing to make the same capability available through other devices.

ECT: I’m glad you mentioned that, because the top of the TV seems to be getting really crowded.

Keyes: We’ll be able to fix that. I think one of the most natural solutions is the same capability put into a Blu-ray player. The reason that is going to be an excellent feature—and we’ll have that capability by the first quarter next year—basically you unplug your old DVD player and plug in your new Blu-ray player.

Yes, we know that the “others” are Netflix, and that that company is not only streaming movies, but going one step further and starting to do so in high-definition, like the recently announced feature on LG’s BD300 Blu-ray player.

CrunchGear speculated that because of Sony’s history with Blockbuster, that included the push to Blu-ray over HD DVD during the high-def media format war, Blockbuster’s streaming would be a natural for the PlayStation 3, which clobbered the competition in our most recent “AVS Forum Recommends” survey of recommended Blu-ray players—even though it’s a gaming console first, Blu-ray player second.

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