Back in the day — just two years ago — there was plenty of talk about ‘if’ Blu-ray would ever make it as a format. Well, those times are behind us, but there’s been plenty of speculations about how Blu-ray will fare in coming years in the face of VOD and SVOD.
Well, the latest news on this front, as reported by Home Media Magazine, is that Blu-ray is doing well. Sales in the US are up 35% and the numbers in other regions of the world are showing similar gains. Consumer electronics manufacturers are releasing players at very economical prices and when combined with the greater number of catalog titles available, there’s never been a better time for Blu-ray.
As predicted by research firm Futuresource, however, physical media will certainly need to share consumer dollars with digital delivery platforms in the near future.
“Indeed, Futuresource projects that by 2015, 30% of video consumption will occur online, followed by Blu-ray Disc (29%), transactional VOD (21%) and DVD (20%).”
That’s a fundamental shift from the years immediately following DVD’s debut. Optical media ruled the home entertainment shelves. Yet the entry of such businesses as Netflix and Redbox, both of which make it so easy to rent titles…to own them TEMPORARILY…has certainly changed how people relate to their media consumption. Now the imperative is to find ways to deliver entertainment media where people are. And that place isn’t fixed in the living room any longer — it’s on the move, it’s mobile. Thus the proliferation of streaming sites and of ‘movie apps’ such as The Dark Knight and Inception by Warner Bros.
We’re not too proud to say that we recognize a great idea when we see one. Our Giant app development and digital media teams are hard at work on creating our own ‘movie app’ which will be a little more manageable to our non-studio and mid-sized distributors and clients.
While we’re certainly pleased to see that Blu-ray is continuing to grow and do well, the general consensus is that Blu-ray will evolve into just one of several ways viewers find and interact with content that interests them. Their method will undoubtedly be a more personal choice, with portability competing with quality among many other factors on the consumer spectrum.