Having lived in South Africa and moved to the United Kingdom, I have spent many months being surprised by a lack of things that I took for granted back home. One of these is video stores. I really thought that there would be more of them around with the London being such an 'indoor' city.
Of the few that I have found within tube distance, 2 of them (one a Blockbuster, and I can't remember the name of the other) have started to carry DVDs as an option.
I own a DVD player, and I do prefer the quality of both the sound and picture that it provides. But on the whole, I don't buy many DVDs. I'll buy music concerts that I'm interested in or the occasional movie that might be worth re-watching, but I prefer to rent.
Having been presented with the option of DVDs, I rent them over video whenever possible. Of the last 5 that I have rented, two of them have been absolutely filthy and skipped as they started playing, and 1 of them was so badly scratched that it was unwatchable for a 5 minute segment. A segment, might I add, that was critical to the plot!
When I compare this to the hundreds of videos that I have rented over the years, I start to wonder about DVDs' suitability as a rental format. I've never had to clean a video before playing it. Over a period of time, my VCR heads get dirty, but those I only have to clean once every hundred or so movies.
I'm interested to hear what other people think of this topic. Is there a way to make DVD usable as a rental format, or will the robustness of VHS win out?