Blu-ray Continues to Perform

There continues to be talk in the home entertainment industry about how Blu-ray will fare in coming years in the face of increasing competition from VOD and SVOD. The perennial question: Won’t physical media formats eventually be replaced by the ubiquity of VOD and digital portals? Possibly, but that day won’t be here anytime soon. For the latest reporting week, ending September 21, Home Media Magazine reports that sales of Blu-ray discs are up nearly 24% from a year ago and comprised 31% of total disc sales. While DVD sales were down for last week, the viewing public’s appetite for physical media seems to endure.

Thomas Arnold, Publisher of Home Media Magazine, addressed the continued and sustained growth of Blu-ray recently:

Blu-ray Disc and digital sales continue to post impressive increases, with the biggest lift, in terms of sheer dollars, always coming from Blu-ray Disc.

In our latest story, the headline — at least for the online version — reads, “DEG: Blu-ray, Digital Making Up for DVD Revenue Declines.”

I’d bet that same headline, with minor variations depending on whether overall spending is up or down, could have been used for virtually every quarterly numbers story we’ve run in the last five or so years.

Putting all this in perspective, it appears to me that had it not been for Blu-ray Disc, the home entertainment industry easily could have nosedived when our entertainment options proliferated like mushrooms with the emergence, mostly post-2005, of YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, online gaming, apps, the iPhone and the iPad.

While we’re certainly pleased to see that Blu-ray is continuing to grow and do well, the general consensus seems to be that Blu-ray will be just one of a number of different options that viewers will have to find and interact with content that interests them. Their choice will undoubtedly be influenced by individual factors such as access, concerns about quality, availability and more, but for the near and mid-term, I think we can bank on Blu-ray continuing into the next decade and beyond.

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