Video kiosk giant Redbox is pulling the plug Tuesday on the struggling streaming service it operates with Verizon Communications, the two companies said.
Redbox Instant, a joint venture of Verizon and Redbox parent Outerwall Inc., was launched last year to compete with Netflix, but never caught on.
“The joint venture partners made this decision after careful consideration,” the companies said in a statement Saturday. “The service had not been as successful as either partner hoped it would be.”
Subscribers will receive an email notifying them of the termination of the service and a separate email will be sent on Friday with details on refunds, the statement said.
The intent was to build on Redbox’s solid walk-up kiosk rental service with the streaming option, but it couldn’t compete with higher-profile online rivals like Hulu Plus, Amazon.com and Netflix.
The shutdown is the latest development in a rapidly evolving sector that has seen several of the delivery platforms expanding into content creation. Netflix last week announced a deal with Adam Sandler to produce four films, day after it partnered with IMAX and the Weinstein Company on a “Crouching Tiger: Hidden Dragon” sequel.