Disney will be giving download services an advantage with the upcoming release of Wreck-It Ralph by making the film available for purchase digitally ahead of the Blu-ray and DVD release. As reported by Deadline Hollywood, Disney will be making both 2D and 3D high-definition versions of the film available digitally on February 12th, while physical media, on-demand, and the standard-definition digital versions won't arrive until March 5th.
It's part of the industry's larger "Digital HD" initiative, with several studios testing out the early release window over the past few months (both Prometheus and Taken 2 were available digitally several weeks before their physical home video releases). All of the major digital video stores — including those run by Apple, Amazon, Google, and Microsoft — take part in the Digital HD program, and while not all titles are being released this way just yet, it's certainly a trend we'd like to see more of. Disney lists no specific price for the advance digital version of Wreck-It Ralph, but previous titles that saw early digital release were priced at $14.99.
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