Struggling video rentailer Blockbuster may be testing the high-def waters this holiday season with a rumored expansion to HD DVD and Blu-ray in some of its most high-volume stores.
At least that's what one poster on AVS Forum says a New York-based Blockbuster store manager told him.
According to the poster's account, beginning on November 7th, select Blockbuster outlets will participate in what's being termed an "experiment" -- stocking 40 titles on both HD DVD and Blu-ray, and adding 4-6 titles each month. The high-def titles will rent at the same rate as standard def discs.
If true, this wouldn't be Blockbuster's first foray with the high-def formats. Like Netflix, the company has been renting high-def discs via itsonline rental service Blockbuster.com since the formats both launched earlier this year.
But given the limited shelf-space of their bricks and mortar outlets, such an experiment would nonetheless be notable, and might serve to encourage other bricks and mortar video rental stores to follow suit.
We'll let you know when (and if) this story is confirmed, and if you see high-def discs for rent at *your* local Blockbuster, please drop us a line (and send us a photo) via our tips and submission form.
UPDATE: (9:00pm ET, 11/1/06) A couple updates on this one -- first, readers in Florida and California wrote in tell us that they too have been told that Blockbuster will begin carrying high-def discs in select stores in their area. And second, Murilo from Brazil sent along this photo from a Brazilian Blockbuster that is apparently already carrying high-def discs. Thanks to all for the tips.