Wow, color us surprised. Blockbuster, owned by Dish Network, is planning to start selling smartphones according to a new report from Bloomberg on Wednesday. Customers will actually be able to walk into a brick and mortar Blockbuster store — best known for renting movies and video games, of course, — to buy a mobile phone.
Blockbuster already started selling phones under its Blockbuster Mobile brand, but the devices are only for sale on its website. The new initiative is in an effort to see how well Blockbuster can sell smartphones ahead of Dish Network’s planned entry into the wireless business. Neither Dish Network nor Blockbuster discussed the plans, revealed by Bloomberg, but Dish has allegedly been in discussions with large tech firms such as Google for assistance in rolling out its wireless network.
Dish, and Blockbuster for that matter, will face incredibly steep competition from AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Sprint and T-Mobile — all of which already have large customer bases and fast nationwide data networks.