Netflix DVD/Blu-ray Rentals
No one liked it when Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) said people needed to pay more money if they wanted to continue enjoying streaming video as well as DVD and Blu-ray rentals through the mail. In fact, that made people downright angry. So while you might think, then, that Netflix abandoning disc-based sales altogether might be a final nail in the company’s reputation, it actually might not be that bad.
Disc-based movie sales are on the slide. The industry made $13.7 billion from DVD and Blu-ray back in 2006. In 2010, sales totaled just $7.8 billion. For Netflix, whose greatest hope lies in international expansion, cutting the by-mail disc business would lower operation costs significantly and free up the company to spend more on digital streaming rights. That might frustrate content partners that want to keep disc sales going, but it might just help Netflix regain some of the simple focus that made it a household name when DVDs were still booming.
The funeral plans for Nintendo‘s (PINK:NTDOY) Wii already have been set, if you consider the company’s track record. After six years on shelves and a staggering 90 million machines sold, the company will release the device’s successor, the WiiU.
However, unlike with most new gaming machine releases, the WiiU is positioned as more of an upgraded Wii rather than a whole new device. It looks like the original, is compatible with its controllers and games and keeps the branding almost indistinguishable from the first go-around. Nintendo also is known for releasing new home machines at very low prices, so WiiU likely will hit at around $250 — just like its predecessor. Nintendo has a handful of Wii games scheduled for release in the first half of 2012, so expect the company to knock the price of new machines below $99 to clear out stock before production stops by year’s end.