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Blockbuster’s Express DVD-rental kiosk.
Blockbuster’s Express DVD-rental kiosk.

Blockbuster touting head start on certain new video releases

DALLAS – Blockbuster Inc., the video rental chain that is in the midst of restructuring under bankruptcy protection, on Monday launched a national ad campaign that promotes its 28-day head start over competitors Netflix Inc. and Coinstar Inc.’s Redbox when it comes to renting certain new releases. The advantage doesn’t apply to all movies or in all formats.

Delayed releases: In the last two months, Universal Studios and News Corp.’s 20th Century Fox announced that they would impose a 28-day delay on movies released to Blockbuster Express kiosks run by NCR Corp., with the exception of a few test cases in which they would charge more than $1 a night. Warner Bros. imposes a similar delay on all kiosk operators. Along similar lines, studios are divided on how soon they allow mail-order firm Netflix to rent out its new home video releases.

Some advantages: James Keyes, Blockbuster’s chief executive, said in a statement the campaign “reminds everyone that we are the first and best source for the hot new releases.” The 28-day advantage applied to such movies as “The Blindside,” “Avatar” and “Sherlock Holmes,” the company said. It will also apply to “Inception” and “Wall Street.”

Associated Press

News Corp. developing iPad version of newspaper

LOS ANGELES – Rupert Murdoch, chief executive of News Corp., is hoping to lure the next generation of newspaper readers with the launch early next year of the Daily, an iPad-centric newspaper currently in development at News Corp.’s Manhattan offices, according to the New York Times. Murdoch is sinking about $30 million into this venture.

Although the Daily will have a new gloss more integrated with the way media works today, it will still be produced in the evening and “printed” for the next morning, the New York Times said.

Associated Press

Hewlett-Packard reports 5 percent rise in income

SAN FRANCISCO – Hewlett-Packard Co. on Monday reported a 5 percent jump in net income driven by corporate spending that was offset by weak demand from consumers and governments. The world’s biggest technology company also raised its profit forecast for the new fiscal year.

HP said its net income was $2.54 billion, or $1.10 per share, in its fiscal fourth quarter, which ended Oct. 31. That was up 5 percent from $2.41 billion, or 99 cents per share, last year. Revenue was $33.28 billion, an 8 percent increase over last year. Analysts expected $32.75 billion.

Associated Press