The format war is over, and Blu-ray safely enthroned as the victor, Warner can now turn its sights beyond—to downloads and the infinite format war. Time Warner's chief executive announced today that Warner Bros. will release movies for on-demand systems like Comcast's and Apple TV on the same day they are released on DVD from now on.
Warner's been toying around with it for a little while and been increasingly open to internet distribution, so it doesn't come as a major surprise. Interestingly, according to their numbers, offering same-day releases on the internet only eats into DVD rentals by 3-5 percent, and actually increases sales. Plus, online rentals/sales bring them more than double the profit margin of physical discs, so everybody wins, except for Blockbuster. (So Hollywood really does have nothing to fear from online distribution.)
The best news though? Head of Warner's home video said that they're trying to make online rentals "at least as lenient" as grabbing a DVD from Blockbuster, breaking open that 24-hour window. Now that would be a deathblow for Blockbuster. [Bits]