Amidst yesterday’s news of Netflix’s decision to split their company in two and rename their DVD by mail service to Qwikster, was the announcement of future video game rental plans. While the details are still exceptionally murky, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings revealed that the company would soon offer Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii games within the Qwikster operation.
The first line of logic that operated for most customers of similar game rental services was “Okay, how does it compare?” Will Qwikster be cheaper, faster, more reliable or offer more of the biggest games? None of that was answered.
But that didn’t stop GameFly, the leader in internet-based, game-by-mail offerings, from reacting to the news with confidence. The company issued a statement regarding the news:
“GameFly has expanded steadily over the past nine years by focusing exclusively on video gamers. We are the only retailer offering games physically and digitally for both rental and purchase…Gamers can try before they buy, choosing from new releases and classic titles that span the last decade. GameFly has more than 8000 games for 10 console and handheld systems to choose from, and over 1500 Windows/Mac games are available for download.”
While GameFly may already have a strong track record and a great stock of video games, the company certainly lacks the massive install base of Netflix. There’s a lot of room for growth when it comes to the new competition, and GameFly would likely do themselves a solid if they prepare for the upcoming market swell.
One major complaint against GameFly is the speed of their delivery. If you live a fair distance from one of their distribution facilities, games can take nearly a week to reach you. Netflix is currently, normally, a two day operation.
And it’s there that I’ll turn the discussion to you, readers. If you already have GameFly, will the presence of a larger, more widespread service like Netflix (Qwikster) convince you to switch? Or, will you be buying into game-by-mail rental services for the first time with this news? Where do you stand?