Audio News for December 19, 2008

by | Dec 19, 2008 | Audio News | 0 comments

AV Technology Not Just for the Young – A recent study by ABI Research showed some interesting results on the use of home entertainment technology by different age groups. Unsurprisingly, people age 65 and older were less likely to use things like Video on Demand (VOS) or game consoles than those 18-25. However, those in the older demographic were just as likely to adopt new technology once they tried it.  The study found that with both older and younger age groups, once they used a technology they typically continue to use it at least once a month afterward.  And while market penetration for computer gaming saw no growth this year in the 18-25 demographic, for age 65 and older it had a 200% increase. This is thought to tie in with falling revenues for home video and increasing gaming-ralated sales.  Video downloads, however, are only popular with younger people.

Music Matters More to Mac Users – A recent study by NPD Group of Internet users in the U.S. over the age of 13 found that 50% of Mac users had bought music online during the third quarter of 2007 while only 16% of PC users had done so.  56% of Mac users listened to their music on a computer vs. only 31% for PC users, and 32% of Mac users had purchased at least one music CD vs. 28% for PC users.

Milestone Meeting Progresses a Global Networking Standard – A meeting just concluded at the UN in Geneva, Switzerland achieved consent on portions of the ITU-T specification for next-generation home networking. The Standardization sector of the International Telecommunications Union has over 185 member countries and sets standards for global networks. The consent mores toward establishment of a single global networking standard for the exploding digital home market.  The standard will unify the networking of content and devices over any wire – coax, phone, or power lines. New services, including IPTV, will be provided more cost effectively, manufacturers can provide powerful devices connecting all types of entertainment, home automation and security products in the house, and purchasing and installation will be greatly simplified. Nonprofit trade group HomeGrid Forum has promoted the new standard in an effort to streamline the provision of advanced multimedia services in homes worldwide, solving some of the current complexities and incompatibilities.

Another Format War? – Some industry experts are predicting that the HD DVD vs. Blu-ray and the Beta vs. VHS format wars before that were nothing compared to the mess we are approaching in the implementation of stereo 3D via HDTV in the home. There are currently dozens of different technologies, both with and without the glasses, and efforts to set standards – required for widespread public acceptance – are just beginning. Hollywood has already learned that 3D can be good business, just as Cinemascope was back in the 50s when the studios were fighting the competition of television. But there are only two theatrical 3D systems, which is bad enough. 

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