Though popular movie rental service Netflix has come under fire recently for separating its streaming and disc-based services into two distinct pricing categories, the company is not done making some bold changes. This newest announced change will separate the parent company Netflix into two distinct websites: Netflix for streaming and Qwikster for disc rentals.
According to an announcement made by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, the company is trying to justify their pricing separation with a complete service separation — one that will include independent queues and ratings. More importantly, the Qwikster service will make a wholehearted attempt at ensnaring GameFly subscribers with the inclusion of PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii rentals.
The announcement was more of an explanation/apology so details on the service are slim, but it does have the millions of dual Netflix and GameFly subscribers like myself intrigued. While similar rental services like RedBox, Blockbuster, and Games ‘n Flix have tried to integrate the movie and games rental business, they haven’t posed any sort of direct competition to GameFly, either due to a lack of timely content or a small customer pool.
With Qwikster, though, GameFly may have a real challenger on their hands. If the price is right — Hastings claims adding games will be similar to the upgrade option the company currently offers with Blu-Ray — Qwikster could be the one-stop-shop for all of your disc rental needs.
Of course there is a lot more to this story, with Netflix separating its two rental services, but the element that should really intrigue gamers is the addition of PS3, Xbox, and Wii rentals. Obviously, Qwikster would need to start incorporating support for new platforms like the 3DS and the Vita for there to be a more even competition, but there’s still some enticement there.
Hastings claims that the switch from Netflix to Qwikster should be taking place in the coming weeks, so check back to Game Rant for more news on this new game rental service as the story develops.
Would you be interested in switching from GameFly to Qwikster if the availabilities, selection, and speed of delivery were comparable? What do you think of the Netflix/Qwikster separation?