Tesco DVD Rental – review

Tesco DVD Rentals – the easiest way to rent DVDs: http://www.tescodvdrental.com/welcome/home.html

This (like most of Tesco‘s offerings) is a rebranded service operated by a 3rd party – in this case Video Island who also operate Screen Select: both sites boast a library of over 37,500 titles, with the only difference being the price. At the most basic level, Tesco charge £7.97 per month for a single disc at a time although if you buy yourself a gift certificate it looks possible to get 12 months for the price of 10, albeit tying yourself to paying that amount rather than being able to cancel at any time.

So far the service has behaved exactly as advertised with postage taking one working day, and the turnaround being sameday – I can’t expect this to hold up over busy postal periods but it does show that their system is working very nicely. Until I have a dispute or another problem I can’t comment on the full service, but given that this is around the same monthly rental as the totally pointless TopUp TV[1] it gives far better value for money, and access to more content – e.g: 24 series 3 and 4 are available without having to wait for wrangles over the UK terrestrial rights to be concluded.

When browsing a page of thumbnails, clicking the Rent button will not only add the title to your selection but also removes the disc from the main list: a very nice touch. Another neat option is the ability to rent an entire TV series in episode order, but this does have one drawback: when the next disc is not available you will receive a totally different item from your list of titles, which is nice because there is something else to watch, and not-so-nice as it does interrupt the flow a little. Not that I can complain too much, as just the single disc of Stargate: Atlantis has put us 4 weeks ahead of the terrestrial broadcast, plus we got to watch it with DD 5.1 sound and no adverts…

One very useful feature is the ability to reserve films way in advance of their release: I was able to add Corpse Bride to my list even though it’s not hit UK cinema’s yet. Oh, and that film also has one of the coolest bits of trivia I’ve seen yet (the DSLR one).

[1] It wouldn’t be pointless if they let me choose from the full set of channels at £7.99, or pick and choose as many as I want at £1 per channel per month.

One Comment

  1. james May 1, 2007

    I signed up for a 60 day free trial of the dvd rental service. Soon after signing up and adding a few games to my account (5 mins) i realised that with the account that i had created i was unable to rent games. i therefore changed the account type to one that allows games and was charged imediatly and told that there will be no refund.

    I find this disgrasefull especially as i quieried it on the same night, before anything could have been dispatched.

    Absolute rubbish service, strongly advise that you stay away from them because of there rubbish customer service attitude.

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