Audio News for January 29, 2010

by | Jan 29, 2010 | Audio News | 0 comments

Theatrical Box Office Overtakes DVD/Blu-ray Sales – For the first time since 2002 – according to Reuters News – consumers in the U.S. spent more money to see movies in theaters than purchasing films on Blu-ray and DVD.  They spent an estimated $8.73 billion for movies on disc, a drop of 13% from the year previous. Blu-ray constituted $1.1 billion of the disc sales for the year as the number of installed players grew from 3 to 8 million.  Domestic box office receipts for 2009 amounted to $9.87 billion up nearly 10%.  It is felt that both 3D films and IMAX showings accounted for the rise in box office gross. The movie disc business peaked in 2004 with $12.1 billion in domestic sales, and due to growing online distribution it is not expected to rebound. When including the figures spent on both rentals thru sable and satellite TV services and the small amoung spent renting or buying movies online, the grand total spent by Americans on feature films in 2009 was $28.38 billion, down very slightly from the 2008 figure.

Blu-ray Blooms; DVDs Slump – Digital Entertainment Group reports that shipments of Blu-ray discs grew 35% in the U.S. to 38.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2009, while shipments of standard DVDs fell 17%. That’s still better than the 31% plunge for 2008, when the bottom first fell out of the DVD market.  During the economic crunch consumers have been increasingly turning to rentals rather than purchases. Both the Redbox kiosks and Netflix’ mail subscription service contributed to that growth.  Digital downloads grew 32% to $2.1 billion and video-on-demand rentals rose 63% in the fourth quarter.

Dreamer Brings Web Content to Blu-ray Players with BD-Live – The just-launched Dreamer Blu-TV interactive TV service will access a greater variety of web video content than is provided by some of the latest TVs and Blu-ray players, and works thru any Blu-ray player that is BD-Live compliant. There will be no subscription charge, but providers of content may charge. The new interface, similar to iPhone apps, expands the promise of extended Blu-ray content without long load times and extends the entertainment experience. The first Blu-ray player to include the service is Oppo’s BDP-83. The service may also be included on a Blu-ray disc which will work in any compliant Blu-ray player. However, Dreamer doesn’t support live streaming video.

OLED and Plasma Best for 3D – A Sony executive has admitted that direct display technology – similar to plasma – is a better way to watch TV. He claims that in the long term, OLED will probably be the future for both 2D and 3D displays, though Sony has no immediate plans to launch OLED. CNet observed that that was admission that LCD wasn’t as good as plasma.  One of the best 3D displays at CES was a Panasonic plasma screen.

Toshiba Launches Blu-ray Recorders – Toshiba, who just a while ago promoted their ill-fated self-developed HD DVD format over Blu-ray and lost, now is offering three different Blu-ray recorders in Japan and one in the U.S. They allow copying material from DVD to Blu-ray and vice versa, and all come with an HDMI interface, a USB port and LAN connectivity. One of the recorders even features a  VHS mechanism to help one back up their videotapes to Blu-ray discs.

Related Reviews
Logo Pure Pleasure