Target Punches Its ‘Ticket’


Target, the retailer with 1,788 U.S. brick-and-mortar locations, is targeting the ultra-competitive video download and electronic sell-through market with last week’s launch of an over-the-top service that touts a library of 30,000 movies and TV shows.

Target Ticket pairs that purchase and rental library with support for UltraViolet, a studio-backed digital locker system that lets customers buy titles on DVD or Blu-ray and redeem digital versions that can be played back on myriad broadband-connected devices. The service started with support for PC browsers, iOS and Android devices, Roku boxes, the Xbox 360, and select Samsung-made TVs and Blu-ray players.

The service, which will compete with cable video-on-demand offerings, will also face off with a crowded market of OTT video stores, including Apple’s iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu (owned by retail magnate Walmart), and M-GO, the Technicolor/Dreamworks Animation joint venture that just inked a deal that gives it a premium spot on the user interface on Roku boxes as well as a branded button on new Roku remote controls.

Target, which beat an Oct. 1 deadline to launch the service nationally, began testing the Target Ticket service earlier this year, starting off with a library of about 15,000 titles.