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Blockbuster kiosks to wait for Warner films

The company that owns and operates Blockbuster Express rental kiosks inks a deal to get Warner Bros. content 28 days after it's available for sale.

Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
2 min read
The Blockbuster Express kiosk
The Blockbuster Express kiosk Screenshot by Don Reisinger/CNET

Don't expect to find new Warner Bros. movies in Blockbuster Express kiosks the same day the DVDs hit store shelves.

NCR, the company that owns and operates Blockbuster Express kiosks (it licenses the name from Blockbuster), announced yesterday that it will get Warner Home Video films 28 days after they're released.

NCR said the deal will help it reduce acquisition costs on films because it previously paid full price at retail to get new Warner Home Video movies into its kiosks. However, when it did so, the company sometimes had the films available in its kiosks on launch day.

The agreement between the parties kicks off in January.

The announcement of NCR's deal with Warner Home Video comes a little over a week after NCR said it will test renting out DVDs on their first day of sale for Twentieth Century Fox Film and Universal Studios Home Entertainment movies. First-day rentals on those films cost $2.99 on DVD and $3.99 on Blu-ray discs. After the first day, consumers pay $1 per night for either DVD or Blu-ray. The test is under way in a handful of cities, including Atlanta, Miami, and San Francisco.

Even with those deals in place, a 28-day delay in offering content is the norm in the rental arena.

Redbox, NCR's chief competitor in the kiosk business, is also forced to wait 28 days to offer Warner Bros. content to customers. Redbox inked 28-day deals with Twentieth Century Fox and Universal Studios Home Entertainment this year as well. Warner Bros. signed the same 28-day deal with Netflix earlier this year.

NCR hopes to have 10,000 kiosks in place by year's end. However, that figure still puts the company far behind Redbox, which has about 25,000 kiosks.