High Efficiency Video Coding
HEVC for short.
Preliminary tests show an improvement over h.264 by as much as 44% depending on the usage scenario.
HEVC is still under development and we might expect to see a further increase in performance from future versions of the draft standard.
So imagine that media downloads of moves now can deliver purchases/rentals of SD movies in under a Gigabyte of data for feature length films or 2-2.5 GB for feature length HD films.
I noticed doing a search that some SoC are already starting to integrate HEVC support into their design so that they will be ready. We also should start looking for the same because HEVC is going to be ratified early 2013 and likely there will be enough new hardware out to start testing the format right away.
People with bandwidth caps or slow connections need a way of accessing downloadable content in the most efficient package as well. Any streaming service that can switch to HEVC will reap huge savings as well.
Plus HEVC supports up to 8K video.