But sometimes things really do change.
John Paczkowski of Good Morning Silicon Valley notes:
Blockbuster's days are numbered. Hemorrhaging cash, the video rental chain that once claimed a market value of $8.4 billion is today worth just under $700 million... If only it had purchased Netflix when it had the chance. A paltry $50 million and it would have had owned the company that destroyed its single biggest profit-earner -- charging late fees to customers who kept videos past the due date -- and forced it to invest millions in an also-ran online rental business that is too little, too late.
A commenter to the post counters that "i disagree. i used to feel the same way but those of us in the valley are too close to our own technology. go to anywhere outside of a high tech center like our own and blockbuster still thrives." Perhaps. But there's little disputing that Blockbuster's financials are a grim thing indeed.
There may indeed still be a significant demand for bricks-and-mortar video rental—but likely not at the scale or at the price structure of current operations. And here's a very real question: If the corner video store's costs require a premium over online and video-on-demand rental charges, how much additional business will it lose?
Still, we'll have video rental stores for a long time—perhaps most of all in cities. But we may well not have Blockbuster.