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Blockbuster makes play for Android users via app

Blockbuster has rolled out an Android application to help consumers manage their memberships and drive foot traffic to locations.

The Blockbuster app works on Android devices that run on the Gingerbread and later operating systems. It is available for free download from both Google Play and the Amazon Appstore.

?Millions of consumers find DVDs and Blu-ray their preferred method for watching movies and both are available at Blockbuster stores and by mail,? said Stephanie Kopet, spokeswoman for Blockbuster, Englewood, CO.

?We want to make it as easy as possible for consumers to find and get the content they want,? she said.

Mobile movies
Using the app, consumers can browse through more than 100,000 movies and games. Users can then search for synopsis information and cast information on the titles.

Movies are also grouped into categories such as new releases.

Consumers can tie the app to their Blockbuster account to manage their mail queue and find movies and games that are available at nearby stores.

The app also lets consumers scan their membership card to store their account information.

In addition to the new Android app, Blockbuster plans to update its iPhone app later this quarter.

Mobile management
As consumers continue to rely on their mobile devices to access entertainment content, more companies are rolling out initiatives that let users manage and watch content via their handsets.

Blockbuster?s competitor Netflix for example lets consumers both manage their account and stream video content directly from their devices.

In this case, Blockbuster is using the app to drive consumers to stores. Therefore, integrating the app with the company?s membership program takes one step out of the process of renting a movie for users.

Nowadays, consumers are in complete control with how and what they watch television and movies.

Therefore, using mobile and incentives are critical in getting users? attentions.

Most recently, Blockbuster acquired mobile point-of-sale software company Alpha Bay to help build up its mobile payment offerings.

The company plans to use the Alpha Bay?s technology in-store to enhance inventory management and customer service. Additionally, Blockbuster is using the platform to tie into promotional programs (see story).

Additionally, in 2010, Blockbuster rolled out a pre-installed application on Verizon?s Droid X devices to let consumers rent and buy movies (see story).

 ?This app is about letting consumers manage their viewing choices,? Ms. Kopet said. 

?We are following multiple paths to support the mobile consumer,? she said. ?This is just one piece that we can provide today.?

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York