But now we know for sure that the service will be here, at the very least, in two months. Redbox Instant by Verizon CEO Shawn Strickland told reporters this morning at the CES that the streaming movie service will be out of beta and available to the public by March.
The new service from Verizon and Coinstar’s Redbox unit launched as a public beta in December. A couple of us at GeekWire signed up for the beta early on, but we haven’t yet gotten our access codes or run across anyone else who has.
“We went into public beta just before the holiday and have been inviting people into the service who signed up through RedboxInstant.com,” a spokesperson told us in an email. “We’ve had tremendous interest in the service and we’re working as quickly as possible to accommodate everyone interested in being part of the early Redbox Instant by Verizon service.”
Redbox and Verizon are aiming to compete with the likes of Netflix and Amazon with a subscription service that blends online streaming with physical DVD rentals from Redbox kiosks.
For $8/month, customers will get unlimited streaming, plus four one-night credits per month for DVDs. For $9/month, they can get Blu-ray rentals rather than standard DVDs.
Online streaming will be available via the web, mobile devices plus some smart TVs and Blu-ray players. The apps for Redbox Instant are available on Android and iOS, but they require access to the beta (and eventually a subscription) to use. Redbox says more compatible streaming devices will be announced in the coming months.