The price of convenience
I was curious today about the value of being a Netflix customer. J and I joined the service in January 2004. Per their site, we have viewed and returned 222 DVDs. If you assume a monthly price of $20–which is actually high, since they’ve now dropped the price, but it works for this quick analysis–that means we’ve paid about $4.15 per title for the privilege of not going to Blockbuster et al. Sure, the per title price through BB is slightly lower, but if you add late fees, gas, and such, it’s probably a financial wash. What makes the deal all worth it is that as I look down the list of 222 movies, I see scores of titles I can’t get at a store. I now control what I watch, not the shelving vagaries of a chain. Yes, I know I can use BB much like Netflix these days, so what I’m really saying is that it’s been a good deal to use a strictly mail-based system to get DVDs.