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Redbox launches Android app, updates iPhone app

Movie rental company Redbox beefs up iPhone app and launches new Android app for customers who want to be able to find kiosks and browse available films.

Movie rental company Redbox is trying to improve its standing in the mobile market.

The company announced today that it has launched a new Android application that will allow its customers to look through available titles, find one of its kiosks around the U.S., and reserve films from the app. In addition, it updated its iPhone app to make the software more responsive to users when they rent movies. The app also now supports box art.

Redbox's iPhone app has performed well. The free application has been downloaded over 2 million times since its launch in December 2009, the company said.

Redbox, which is owned by Coinstar, offers DVD and Blu-ray rentals at 26,000 kiosks around the United States. The company recently came off a difficult fourth quarter, missing revenue and profit forecasts due to the impact rental delays had on its operation.

"Overall, the performance of the Redbox business during the fourth quarter was not in line with our forecast," Coinstar CEO Paul Davis said in a statement at the time. "This was Redbox's first holiday season with 28-day delayed titles, and we underestimated the impact that the delay would have on demand during the fourth quarter."

Redbox is currently required to wait 28 days before it can rent content from Warner Bros., Universal Studios Home Entertainment, and Twentieth Century Fox. Those delays helped studios increase sales during the fourth quarter and prompted the rental firm to miss its forecasted rentals by a whopping 14 million units.

In addition to service improvements in the mobile business, Redbox recently updated its Web site to aid customers in picking films they want to watch. Customers are able to reserve up to five films at a time before they head down to their local kiosk to pick them up.

Redbox's iPhone app and Android app are available for free in the App Store and Android Market, respectively.