Redbox Instant (iOS) review: Redbox Instant is perfect for subscribers, but the streaming catalog is less than stellar

Once you're set up, the home screen for the Redbox Instant app is laid out a lot like Netflix's, with thumbnails of movie posters sorted by category. Across the bottom of the screen are buttons to navigate to each section. You can browse movies by using a drop-down menu in the upper left to switch between genres and Redbox-curated collections. You can look at the My Redbox section, where you'll see your viewing history, movies you've bookmarked to watch later, and previous purchases. A locations button pinpoints all the Redbox locations in your area. There's also an account button where you can see how many rentals you have left for the month and a preferences section to restrict content if your child will be using the device.

When you go to a movie page, you can look at movie info like the genre, cast, director, and release date. But you also can thumb through user reviews for the movie. A "more like this" section on the right helps you find similar movies if you're looking to try something new.

Redbox Instant

The subscription service for Redbox Instant will cost you $8 per month with four DVD rentals or $6 per month just for streaming. That's compared with Netflix's $8 per month for instant only, and an additional cost for DVDs. But the major difference here is the size of the two catalogs. At the time of this writing Netflix offers 14,000 TV shows and movies in its Watch Instantly service, while Redbox Instant only carries 4,600 movies and no TV shows. Redbox also does not yet have agreements with all the major movie companies, but that's likely to change as time goes on.

In other words, with fewer movies available to watch instantly, it probably wouldn't make sense for you to sign up with the Redbox right now unless you're going to take advantage of the four DVDs per month from nearby Redbox stations. But if you're already a Redbox devotee, this app is great for managing your rentals, browsing through titles, reserving movies at the Redbox near you, and watching an instant movie from time to time.

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    Redbox Instant (iOS)

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