Wal-Mart has opened an online DVD rental service at its Web site, confirming speculation that the market for online DVD rentals created by Netflix would attract a large, established company. Wal-Mart's offering is aimed directly at Netflix, offering similar services for $18.86 per month, versus Netflix's rate of $19.95. For each service, customers request DVDs online, and the company pays postage to ship the films. There are no due dates for either service, though subscribers are allowed only three movies at a time. Reed Hastings, chief executive of Netflix, said he is not concerned about Wal-Mart's "unimaginative" and "slavish imitation of Netflix." He said his company knows "the area better" and can beat Wal-Mart. A spokeswoman for Wal-Mart said the company would modify the service in coming months based on feedback from subscribers. She said the number of subscribers will probably be limited until the full roll-out of the service next year.
Posted by jzawodn at October 16, 2002 04:42 PM