Join gaming leaders online at GamesBeat Summit Next this upcoming November 9-10. Learn more about what comes next.
Updated at 3:40 p.m. PST with a response from Gamefly CEO Dave Hodess.
Gamefly began notifying its current customers about the service via email today, according to a post on video game fan forum NeoGAF. Currently in beta, the service will offer both DVD and Blu-ray discs to those subscribers. Like its game rentals, subscribers will be able request either one or two movies at a time and won’t need a separate account.
“We’re viewing this as a test based feedback we’ve received from subscribers who asked for it,” said Gamefly CEO Dave Hodess in an interview with VentureBeat. He added that the company plans to monitor data on movie rentals and make adjustments as necessary.
Three top investment pros open up about what it takes to get your video game funded.
From a business perspective, it makes a lot of sense that Gamefly would want to get into the movie business. Its game rental service has a similar distribution model and already has the warehouse and shipping infrastructure. Also, the major players in the rent-by-mail sector are focusing more on streaming video or are gone (think Blockbuster). For years, Netflix has predicted an end to its disc-based rental service, citing higher shipping costs, but this shouldn’t be as big an issue for Gamefly since mail rentals is still considered its core business.
What might be a bit of an issue for Gamefly is a potential backlash from game subscribers, who have often complained that Gamefly doesn’t stock enough copies of new releases of hot games or that its shipping is slow. And those subscribers might wonder why Gamefly is jumping into a new rental business without first fixing the core service. Yet as noted above, it seems that there’s also a crop of Gamefly subscribers who’ve requested movie rentals, too.
We’ve reached out to the company for more details as well as if the company plans on launching a streaming video service in the future. We’ll update this post with any new information we learn.
GamesBeatGamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. How will you do that? Membership includes access to:
- Newsletters, such as DeanBeat
- The wonderful, educational, and fun speakers at our events
- Networking opportunities
- Special members-only interviews, chats, and "open office" events with GamesBeat staff
- Chatting with community members, GamesBeat staff, and other guests in our Discord
- And maybe even a fun prize or two
- Introductions to like-minded parties