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McDonald's Jettisons All But DVD Vending Machines in Test

4 Dec, 2003 By: Holly J. Wagner

Fast-food giant McDonald's has pulled the plug on its test of variety-goods vending machines, but plans to leave a dozen DVD vending machines in the field because they generate traffic to the restaurants.

Although the company reportedly couldn't get enough return on its investment to continue running the 18-foot-wide Redbox vending machines, which have a much larger footprint and offer everything from cold milk to tampons to DVDs, the DVDs continued to rent at $2.97 for three nights, even as other products went to spoil.

“We are focused on bringing more customers to our 30,000 restaurants around the world,” McDonald's spokeswoman Lisa Howard told The Washington Post.

McDonald's was simultaneously testing TikTok DVD Shops, a smaller vending machine with rental DVDs, in the Adams-Morgan neighborhood of Washington, D.C. The dozen TikTok machines are slated to stay in place, Howard said.

McDonald's bought TikTok from its creator, Automated Distribution Technologies of Exton, Pa.

In a separate initiative, McDonald's plans to expand its brand with children's clothing and kidvids. The McKids videos are slated to be a mix of music and educational content starring Ronald McDonald. No word on whether those will appear in TikTok machines.

A McDonald's spokesperson failed to return phone calls by press time.

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