updated 10:59 am EDT, Tue April 2, 2013
Archive-based catalog could serve niche audience
Warner Bros has opened up its catalog of historic movies and television shows on a new site for streaming subscribers, rather than more modern shows and theater productions. The Warner Archive Instant offers a selection of vintage films to watch instantly, and expands on the studio's existing Warner Archive store for DVD and Blu-ray discs. Currently, the service is only available in the US.
The streaming service costs $10 per month, and provides a selection of content spanning the history of Warner, including Warner Bros itself ad co-productions with MGM, Allied Artists, and RKO, that will be swapped with other films and shows on a regular basis, reports Engadget. A number of titles will be viewable at 1080p, and can be streamed to Mac, PCs, and Roku set top boxes, with other devices planned for the future.
Despite the impressive back catalog of major and minor releases in the Warner Archive Instant, it is likely that only those wanting to watch older movies and TV shows will want to subscribe to the service. Mainstream streaming services such as Netflix provide far more content, if heavily skewed towards modern offerings, than what Warner is currently providing, and at a similar subscription cost. The site offers a two-week free trial before users must subscribe.