The advantages of renting movies through an online service versus from a video store are numerous; the convenience of picking and choosing from your own home, no late fees, a much larger selection and no price differences between, say, a new release or an older movie. There is, however, one major disadvantage; having to wait for the DVD to reach your home.
To rent DVDs online, users join an online provider (see examples below) and add the movies they wish to see to their Queue. The movies at the top of the list will be sent to your home. When you are finished, place the DVD in the self-addressed stamped envelope provided and pop it in the mail box. Once it is returned, you will receive a replacement.
Quickflix is the most popular online provider in Australia, with more than 43 000 DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray DVD titles on offer. Choose from a capped plan, where you can only receive a certain amount of movies per month, or an uncapped plan, where you receive unlimited titles. You can pay for your Quickflix account using a credit card or your PayPal account and you can pause your subscription for up to a month at any time.
Bigpond Movies, a subsidiary of Tesltra Bigpond, offers movie downloads as well as DVD rental. If you have the right equipment, they can even be downloaded straight to your television. Video rental plans are charged on a monthly basis (from $9.95 for the lite plan to $29.95 for the ultra plan) while movie and television downloads are charged per download. Potential users can enjoy a free two week trial by signing up here (warning - you will need to provide your credit card details).
For the past couple of months I've been trying out a Quickflix trial membership. So far I've been pretty happy with the whole experience. It's good to be able to browse movies in your own time, rather than having the usual "get to the video store and spend hours trying to find something everyone wants to watch" problem. No late fees is another big positive.
By Tim Falk - senior reviewer Tuesday, 5th of July @ 10:55 am