Blu-Ray Flourishes In Europe
Everyone is wondering how the current recession will impact the video game industry, but not only does gaming appear to be standing stoic in the face of the economic ailment, but Blu-Ray also appears to be flourishing.
According to a recent Futuresource press release published at PRWeb, "sales of Blu-Ray disc movies are defying the odds and bucking the credit crunch." So far, Sony is already reporting record numbers heading into the holiday season, and both movies and BD players are disappearing quickly from store shelves. This data comes from a European source, but it could be a good indication of how Blu-Ray is performing in North America, assuming it's a worldwide demand for the new high-definition format. At this point, they expect Blu-Ray player sales to "more than triple" in 2009 in Europe, and they're not even counting potential sales of the PlayStation 3! For the British region, consumers bought 462,500 BD discs in November, which is a 165% increase over October. New December numbers released by the British Video Association (BVA) showed "The Dark Knight" sold a ridiculous 513,000 units on the first day alone, and 21% of those sales were Blu-Ray. As most business analysts will tell you, 2008 has certainly "been a breakthrough year for Blu-Ray." Said Jim Bottoms, Managing Director of Corporate Development at Futuresource:
"The Blu-ray disc format offers an unparalleled home entertainment experience, something all those involved with this technology have always known. Once people see the benefits of Blu-ray for themselves, they soon realise the difference it can make. Seeing is believing after all! We fully expect Blu-ray to keep on bucking the current economic trend and continue its rapid growth over the next few months and beyond, stimulated by falling prices and even more bundling deals with large screen TVs."
So it seems Blu-Ray is really catching on in Europe and based on this evidence, we'd like to think the format fares equally well in the U.S. We'll have to wait for the holiday numbers in January before we can say for certain how far Blu-Ray has come, but we think it's fairly obvious that BD is well on its way to becoming the format of choice for consumers.
12/21/2008 John Shepard