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Report: Blu-ray to Lift Packaged Media In 2010

19 Nov, 2009 By: Chris Tribbey

Thanks to an estimated 45.4 million Blu-ray Disc players (18.4 million standalone, 27 million PlayStation 3s) in homes worldwide by the end of the year, Blu-ray Disc should help offset any decline in DVD in 2010, according to research from Screen Digest.

“The increasing availability of cheaper, entry-level BD players and expansion in the number of homes with an HDTV set will drive growth in BD player households in 2009, which in turn will boost sales of BD software,” said David Scott, a senior analyst for the Asia-Pacific region at Screen Digest. The firm is expecting a slight dip in worldwide packaged media revenue for 2009.

With 2008 marking the first year there was a decline in total video software units shipped worldwide (2.7 billion, down 1.4%), the research firm isn’t expecting overall numbers to improve by the end of the year, especially with the recession. Last year also saw a 2.8% worldwide drop in consumer spending on both sellthrough and rental. But higher Blu-ray demand and marked decreases in DVD and Blu-ray software prices will help packaged media stay strong in the new year, the firm said. In 2009, Blu-ray is expected to account for 8.5% of total consumer spending on packaged media.

“Clearly, the start of a global recession was not the ideal time to launch an upgrade to what many consumers consider to be a perfectly serviceable home entertainment system, and spending on the Blu-ray format has been slower than the industry had hoped as a result,” said Helen Davis Jayalath, Screen Digest’s head of video research.

The average worldwide DVD retail price will hit $13.42 by year’s end, Screen Digest estimates — down 8% from 2008. The firm expects more than 540 million homes worldwide to have a DVD player by the end of the year, an 8.5% increase from 2008.

Rental saw its total revenue share of packaged media go up half a percentage point in 2008 to 32%, the first gain for rental after years of decline. That trend should continue when all is said and done in 2009. Screen Digest expects a 2% uptick in rental revenue for 2009, largely thanks to Netflix and Redbox in the United States, and higher demand for rental in Japan.

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