The NPD Group reports that only 5% of those who can rent and watch movies through Internet video on demand are doing so. The market research firm estimates that 134 million Americans own game consoles, Internet-connected television sets, smartphones, streaming-media players or tablet computers that can access Internet VOD. So far, however, Internet VOD is making little headway against pay-TV VOD and video streaming by Netflix and other subscription services.
Movie studios and cable companies are discussing a new model for handling movie releases, under which home viewers would be charged $20 to $30 for video-on-demand access to new cinema releases, far in advance of a DVD release. Critics say the price point is too high for most consumers, who are likely to stay with low-cost alternatives such as Netflix.
Cablevision Systems will offer a free VOD sneak preview of Nick Jr.'s "Go, Diego, Go!" The spin-off of "Dora the Explorer" will be available through the interactive service's "Nick on Demand" in August -- well before the show debuts Sept. 6.
Back in 1998, Reed Hastings was a small-business man whose 14-month-old startup was in trouble. Today, that company, Netflix, is the king of the DVD-by-mail industry, and Hastings faces challenges he couldn't have imagined when he started.
Netflix, the online DVD rental company, is facing an increasingly competitive world. Blockbuster and Wal-Mart have cut prices, Internet behemoth Amazon.com may enter the fray, and VOD is growing more popular. In this blog-style special report, CNET looks at the DVD price wars.