Bad news: Netflix burdened with longer DVD window
As if Netflix hasn’t had enough bad news recently, they’re now telling us Warner Bros. has extended the rental window from 28-days to 56-days. This means, instead of waiting a month to rent a new DVD or Blu-ray Disc, you now have to wait almost two months.
Warner Bros., along with many other Hollywood studios, had instituted a 28-day sales-only window for newly released DVDs and Blu-ray Discs in order to encourage disc-sales. Clearly the 28-day window was an homage to Danny Boyle, because sales of movies have not been bolstered by such a stupid plan.
It’s not clear why Netflix is entitled to such a long window as brick-and-mortar renters like Blockbuster (if they’re still into that sort of thing), and Redbox now get the titles a month earlier. Not that this was any different than before, because Netflix usually had long-waiting times for newly released movies anyway due to their demand. From reading the press release, it seems like they might be doing this to give UltraViolet and the Warner-owned Flixster an advantage over Netflix.
Read the press release after the break.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment to Make New Release DVD and Blu-ray Titles Available for Rental Only After 56-Day Sales-Only Window
LAS VEGAS, Jan. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group and Netflix, Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) today announced a new agreement that will extend the current 28-day sales-only window to 56 days for Theatrical New Release and made-for-video titles on DVD and Blu-ray Disc.
“Since we implemented a 28-day window for subscription and kiosk, we have seen very positive results with regard to our sell-through business,” said Mark Horak, president, Warner Home Video North America. “One of the key initiatives for Warner Bros. is to improve the value of ownership for the consumer and the extension of the rental window – along with our support of UltraViolet – is an important piece of that strategy.”
Warner Bros. is balancing its home entertainment revenue streams by creating different times at which a product is available at different prices. A staggered schedule allows the Studio to maximize the sales potential of its theatrical new release titles and VOD offerings.
“Netflix wants to ensure members have continued secure access to Warner Bros. DVDs and Blu-ray discs and, as such, is accepting the 56 day holdback,” said Netflix Vice President of Content Anna Lee.
The new agreement was announced at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nev. in conjunction with an annual event held by the Digital Entertainment Group.
About Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group (WBHEG) brings together Warner Bros. Entertainment’s home video, digital distribution, interactive entertainment/videogames, direct-to-DVD production, technical operations and anti-piracy businesses in order to maximize current and next-generation distribution scenarios. WBHEG is responsible for the global distribution of content through DVD, electronic sell-through and transactional VOD, and delivery of theatrical content to wireless and online channels, and is also a significant worldwide publisher for both internal and third party videogame titles.
With more than 20 million streaming members in the Americas, the United Kingdom and Ireland, Netflix, Inc. [Nasdaq: NFLX] is the world’s leading internet subscription service for enjoying films and TV programmes. For about US$7.99 a month, Netflix members can instantly watch unlimited films and TV episodes streamed over the internet to PCs, Macs and TVs. Among the large and expanding base of devices streaming from Netflix are the Microsoft Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii and Sony PS3 consoles; an array of Blu-ray disc players, internet-connected TVs, home theatre systems, digital video recorders and internet video players; Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, as well as Apple TV and Google TV. In all, more than 700 devices that stream from Netflix are available. For additional information, visit www.netflix.com. Follow Netflix on Facebook and Twitter.