Blockbuster Launches In-Store Downloads
Dallas Blockbuster is preparing to pilot in-store kiosks that will allow customers to download movies onto their portable devices within two minutes. James Keyes, Blockbuster’s chairman and CEO, revealed the test at the company’s annual shareholder meeting Wednesday.
The kiosk, designed for the pilot version by NCR, allows shoppers to search and browse for downloadable films, watch trailers and buy or rent movies with a credit card or pre-loaded Blockbuster card. Over time, it will also allow them to subscribe to kiosk or other service usage.
While the company is still in negotiations with studios about content deals for the trial, the pilot will feature limited movies during the test. Keyes declined to reveal how many movies would be featured during the pilot.
Keyes reported that he envisioned a monthly subscription fee of $10. The service could also feature games in the future, he said.
The trial will launch in a couple of Dallas-based stores.
New Gap Inc. service enables universal shopping
SAN FRANCISCO Gap Inc. has launched a new online service, “universality,” which enables customers to shop at all of its brands at one time. Customers can now add items from the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Piperlime web sites into one shopping cart.
Gap Inc. added that customers benefit from a flat shipping rate of $7 and orders from Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy will ship in one box. Orders from Piperlime will ship separately and continue to offer free shipping and returns.
“We’re thrilled to offer our customers the ease and convenience of shopping our four amazing brands online with only one check-out,” said Toby Lenk, president of Gap Inc. Direct. “Universality allows us to leverage the strength of our iconic brands and still maintain each brand’s identity.”
Amazon.com to boost digital offerings
SEATTLE Amazon.com has plans to launch a streaming video service in the next few weeks as part of its plan to boost its digital offerings, said ceo Jeff Bezos, speaking at The Wall Street Journal’s D: All Things Digital conference, according to reports.
Bezos reportedly also talked about Amazon’s portable reading device, Amazon Kindle, saying it could possibly become an important part of its online business.
The company recently lowered Kindle’s price to $359 from $399.