Audio News for November 1, 2011

by | Nov 1, 2011 | Audio News

Digital Entertainment Group Report – According to their Third Quarter 2011 Home Entertainment Report, spending rose 5% and the number of Blu-ray homes jumped from 52% a year ago to a total household penetration of Blu-ray compatible devices to over 33.5 million. The Blu-ray sell-thru was up nearly 13% over the same period last year, and sales of box office hits often surpass 50% in Blu-ray sales in their first week of release as such. Catalog Blu-ray sales are also on the rise with increases of more than 60%, led by such titles as Star Wars, Citizen Kane and The Big Lebowski.  5.5 million HDTVs were sold to U.S. consumers in the third quarter, with HDTV penetration now at over 69.5 million U.S. households. Theatrical blockbusters coming to home entertainment in the fourth quarter include: Captain America: The First Avenger, Cars 2, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, The Help and Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
Box Office Report – The SNL Kagan Box Office Report shows a 1.1% growth compared to 2010. The fall season is tracking 5.5% ahead of last year. Admissions numbered nearly 1.03 billion—down 6.3% from 2010. The current top 20 films accounted for 95% of this week’s total gross. They included Dolphin Tale, Real Steel, Moneyball, The Ides of March & 50/50. Captain America: The First Avenger and Rise of the Planet of the Apes are so far the top money-making films, with around $175 million each. Time Warner is the top distributor of the year, with Viacom in second place.
Eleven Industry Leaders Into CE Hall of Fame – On Oct. 28, the annual Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame awards were announced in San Diego, honoring the $190 billion CE industry. Among the new members inducted were: Dr. Fujio Masuoka, who invented flash memory while at Toshiba; Dr. Robert Metcalfe, who co-invented Ethernet will working at Xerox in 1973; Dr. Andrew Viterbi, who invented the algorithm used in cell phone codecs, as well as for speech recognition and DNA analysis; Dr. Eli Harari, co-founder of SanDisk—the company invented or developed many of the standard memory card formats in CE products; Stanley S. Hubbard, who launched the first digital satellite system for TV in 1994; Sandy Bloomberg, founder of the Tweeter retail chain; and Ivan Berger & Lance Braithwaite, who worked together and wrote extensive product reviews for Sound & Video Magazine.
Sonos Distributed Via Target – Three wireless multi-room audio components from Sonos are now distributed for the first time thru Target stores: a 2-way wireless stereo speaker at $299, a 3-way wireless stereo speaker at $349, and the $49 Bridge, which connects to a home router to wirelessly stream music from networked computers to the speakers. The speakers also then can stream Internet stations and music services, and music can be selected for playback thru apps designed for the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Android smartphones.
Polk Flagship Speaker Series – The company’s new LSiM four-way tower speakers replace their near-decade-old flagship speakers. At $4000 a pair they are said to be the most advanced speaker line in the firm’s 40-year history.  Matching center-channel, bookshelf and bipole surround speakers are also available.

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