Best Buy Bows Wi-Fi Blu-ray Player for $11921 Dec, 2009 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Entering the Christmas week stretch, Best Buy Co. is selling its house brand Insignia Blu-ray Disc player (NS-WBRDVD) with wireless connection to the Internet and Netflix streaming for $119 (after a $60 mail-in rebate) — the lowest retail price for a Web-enabled BD player.
Wal-Mart and Office Depot last week each offered non-Internet compatible Blu-ray players for less than $80 — the lowest suggested retail price a high-definition format player.
The No. 1 retailer in the world and No. 1 consumer electronics store in the United States have gone toe-to-toe this holiday season marketing Blu-ray, including devoting significant store space and signage and slashing software pricing to loss leader levels.
Indeed, The NPD Group last week said Wal-Mart had bridged the gap to Best Buy, heretofore the self-proclaimed market leader in BD software sales, with each company now generating high 20% market shares.
Separately, Blockbuster Inc. is offering the Web-enabled Samsung BD-P1600 player with four free Blu-ray rentals for $149.99, according to a national circular. When factoring in the $5.43 new release Blu-ray rental price, the player actually sells for $128.27.
Blockbuster is also selling new release DVD and Blu-ray titles for $14.99 and $19.99 each, respectively.