Netflix DVD Exchange: Is It Worth It?

As I cleaned out my DVD cabinet in search for something to pop into the video player, I came across an old Netflix rental that my family had forgotten to watch or send back for a month or so. I was surprised at how wasteful it was, since I had been watching the online streaming for the entire month but had forgotten about the hard copy of Pulp Fiction sitting in my family room. Plus, I figured that maybe Pulp Fiction was now on Instant Play online. Or it would be soon enough. My pondering begged the question, are DVD’s and blu Rays starting to become obsolete? Even just unnecessary and pricey?

The cost to keep out a single DVD with unlimited exchanges for a month on Netflix is $9.99. You want blu ray? That’ll be two dollars more. In the meantime, to add on Instant Play is a $7.99 purchase. I, like many others, find myself using Instant Play far more than the DVD exchange simply because of its ease of use. I can watch an entire season of a show in one day without dealing with the mess of exchanging, which requires mailing and wait. As Netflix has added more instant content, the idea of mailing a DVD or blu ray is starting to become silly.

Why pay more for DVD’s, which are more of a hassle to acquire, when the instant streaming is less money and far more accessible, I ask. And this is surely the trend in the movie watching market as well, with more users feeling they can get their fair share of watchable content simply off the web.

As the movie market continues to dramatically shift, perhaps we all need to reevaluate whether that DVD rental account is still worthwhile. Check the DVD cabinet, there might still be some overdue rentals lurking. It’s time to clean those selves.