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Consumers Continue to Buy DVD, With Men Leading the Way

10 Jun, 2004 By: Judith McCourt

Despite industry fears that consumers would not continue to buy DVDs at the same rate as early adopters, DVD buy rates remain robust, according to findings in the 2004 Video Store Magazine Home Entertainment Study.

More than 850 U.S. households responded to the survey conducted in February 2004.

The average DVD household purchased almost 20 discs in the 12 months preceding the survey, according to the findings.

Men bought more than women — averaging 23.6 DVDs bought in the past year — but women still bought on average 16.5 DVDs.

The average DVD collection is more than 43 discs. Men say their collections number just under 60 discs, while women's collections are half that size.

Discount stores such as Wal-Mart, Target and Kmart are the DVD purchase destinations of choice. The survey findings suggest that women combine the purchase of DVDs with other shopping trips, perhaps underscoring the premium women put on time and convenience. Almost three-quarters of women purchase DVDs at either discount stores or club stores such as Costco and Sam's Club. Men, by comparison, are almost twice as likely as women to buy at a consumer electronics store.

When it comes to what consumers are buying, both genders are almost on par when it comes to picking up family and kid fare, with women just slightly more likely to purchase those genres than men. But when it comes to hit releases, men (66 percent) are more likely than women to have purchased a hit title in the last year. Still, women are not far behind in the hit-buying parade, with 57 percent of all women saying they bought a hit title last year. On the other hand, women are more likely to buy a classic than men.

DVD household penetration is at 71 percent — if you include all DVD playback devices in the equation, from the traditional set-top players (66 percent penetration) to game consoles (46 percent). Multiple DVD set-top players are becoming more the norm, with more than one third of all households saying that they have multiple players.

DVD players share the home entertainment landscape with both enhancing and competing technologies. Almost half of the DVD homes surveyed said they have invested in systems that enhance the audio experience.

Flat-screen viewing options, such as plasma screens, are also on the rise, with more than 10 percent of those households saying they own plasma screens.

Almost two-thirds of the DVD households surveyed had cable, and half of those said that they had digital cable with access to almost unlimited programming options. More than a quarter of the DVD households have direct-to-broadcast satellite.

Eighty-five percent of DVD households have PCs and three-quarters have Internet access, suggesting that consumers may soon demand integration of the PC and the entertainment center.

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