During a recent earning call, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said that about 500,000 subscribers would be paying the new $1 Blu-ray fee. This is about six percent of Netflix's customers -- up from one percent 18 months ago -- and a number we're actually surprised with. The reason why we find it surprisingly low is because according to the Nielsen VideoScan numbers, Blu-ray sales have managed to steal away closer to 10 or 12 percent from DVD and we just figured there were more renters than buyers. The apparently incorrect reasoning was simple, it is a new format and renting is a the safer bet. Because as in any packaged media ecosystem, you spend way more money on the discs than on the player and we assumed consumers we're hedging their bets by renting. So while the so called Netflix effect isn't there, these numbers do show us some insight to the Blu-ray customer base, and we'll be looking forward to the next Netflix earnings call for indications of Blu-ray growth.
[Via Format War Central]