Wal-Mart Testing Game-Trading Kiosks
There’s good money to be made in buying and selling used video games. With big players such as Amazon getting in on the action, competition is sure to heat up quickly. The latest retailer that’s trying to get a piece of the pie is Wal-Mart. The retailer recently leased space to automated kiosk manufacturer e-Play.
As a result of the agreement between e-Play and Wal-Mart, 77 Wal-Mart stores will have e-Play kiosks that will let you sell used video games and rent movies or games for $1 per day. According to the e-Play website, you must have both a credit card and identification (such as a driver’s license) in order to trade in games. After scanning a movie or game case at the kiosk, you’ll be able to see how much you can get for a used title. If you choose to accept the offer, you must insert the disk into the machine and wait two to three days for a credit to be issued on your credit or debit card. Credit for games reportedly ranges from 50 cents to around $25 for more recent, high-demand titles.
As you can see from the pictures, the kiosk looks very similar to Redbox DVD rental machines. According to reports, the machines still have a few bugs. One issue is with the login process. Another issue is that the kiosks don’t always recognize the games and lack information on certain titles in the kiosk’s database.
At this time, Wal-Mart says there are no plans to expand the pilot program beyond the 77 initial stores. However, the company did say it would consider expanding the program if it is successful. The kiosks are reportedly located in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island.
Considering the reported glitches in the system, Wal-Mart probably won’t succeed at stealing much competition away from gaming retailers in the short term. In addition to glitches, there’s also the question as to how machines will handle fraudulent transactions where users leave out the disc or of if a disc is damaged. If Wal-Mart and e-Play can resolve these issues however, there’s definitely the potential for this new offering to take off. What do you think? Would you trade in games at Wal-Mart instead of at your favorite gaming retailer?