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Amazon challenges DVD rental market with lower rates

LONDON - Amazon.co.uk is taking on the crowded UK DVD online rental market with a new offering that will undercut current prices by as much as 30%.

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Amazon is luring customers with lower prices, starting at £7.99 a month -- but there is a catch. While competitors such as ScreenSelect, LoveFilm and Blockbuster allow users unlimited rentals for their monthly subscription fee, Amazon will limit the number of titles people can rent each month.

The service will be integrated into Amazon's existing DVD store, allowing people to rent or buy in the same area of the site. The company will use its existing recommendations technology and sales rankings to suggest titles. The service will also be accessible through Amazon's sister site IMDB.co.uk.

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com, said: "Amazon is determined to be the best place to rent DVDs, online or off. We're excited to launch today in the UK with a high-quality, low-priced DVD rental service.

"As an additional benefit, our rental members will get an extra 10% off when they choose to buy from Amazon.co.uk's selection of tens of thousands of DVDs."

Amazon is sticking to its no-advertising policy for the DVD rental launch, and will be promoting the site through a PR campaign and via associate marketing.

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