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Blu-ray already saviour for US video market

by David Mercer | 4月 18, 2008

It's early days in the era of high def discs, but already it seems as though the post-DVD transition is having the desired effect for the studios. According to Home Media Magazine's research, total consumer spending on DVDs and BDs in Q108 rose by 1% compared to the same period in 2007 ($5.51bn v. $5.46bn). Within this total, rental spending declined 1.6% to $2.04bn, while sell-through increased 2.3% to $3.47bn. And within sell-through, DVD sales fell 1.2% but BD was up by 351%. In other words, BD was the only factor that stopped the market declining. The maturation of the US home video market has been a reality for a few years, as both DVD sales and rental have flattened and even declined slowly. This is less the impact of online, as some would have us believe, than the simple fact that the DVD platform has matured naturally after explosive growth in early part of the decade. The latest data are remarkable in a couple of ways. First, that we are in the middle of the worst economic downturn the US has seen for many years. Second, that there is any growth at all in an industry that many had suggested is now in permanent decline because of digital streaming, downloads and, of course, piracy. And third, that Blu-ray is already having the positive impact the studios hoped for at such an early stage in the platform's history. All those scare stories about slow BD player sales and the weak impact of PS3 on movie sales seem to be wide of the mark. As our research showed recently, there will be nearly 30 million homes worldwide with a BD player of some type by the end of this year, and that will already be enough to make a significant impact on the home video market. As BD begins to have a similar impact in Europe it will be interesting to watch the studios' approach to digital distribution. While they continue to explore new revenue models, such as the deals with Xbox Live, it seems likely that Blu-ray will dominate their attention for some years to come, just as DVD was beginning to do 10 years ago. Client Reading: Xbox Live Boosts Addressable HD Market as Warner Bros Continues Rollout of Day-and-Date Strategy for New Movies Blu-ray Devices: Forecasting Sales and Ownership Add to Technorati Favorites
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