Judge explains that the kiosks scan inserted games for "functionality," and then issue vouchers that are "instantly redeemable" for Best Buy gift cards, which can be spent on any item in the store. In addition, some of the kiosks will double as rental stations for games and movies, and participating stores will also resell used games (presumably those dumped into the kiosks).
Best Buy's new initiative follows similar actions taken by Toys R Us, Amazon and Wal-Mart earlier this year, and as predicted by Lazard Capital Markets analyst Colin Sebastian. Sebastian continues to view the surge of business ventures into the used games market as an expansion of GameStop's existing foothold (though GameStop shares briefly tumbled today after the Best Buy news, as reported by WSJ) and argues to Gamasutra that software and hardware companies aren't necessarily being fleeced by the practice. "While many video game software publishers and console manufacturers view the used exchanges as cannibalizing sales, we note that consumers use a large portion of trade-in credit to purchase new products."
[Image credit: kylemac]