Few Buy into the Next-Gen Movie Hype

Few Buy into the Next-Gen Movie Hype

Here we are, more than a year since the emergence of next-gen, high-definition players and drives, and there’s still so little momentum behind the movement that it’s almost comical. We know anecdotally how few computer users are actually buying high-def drives, and we haven’t received a single PC containing one, but now a report released by Sony provides actual numbers that illustrate the pathetic sales for commercial HD discs.

Granted, the report shows Sony’s Blu-ray in a favorable light relative to HD-DVD—otherwise, it’s unlikely to have been publicized—but the numbers are still very telling of a surprisingly low adoption rate. Based on data from an A.C. Nielsen VideoScan survey of disc sales, Sony’s report highlights the record sales of Casino Royale (a Blu-ray title) during the week of March 18. Yes, 28, 233 copies of the movie sold the first week of its release is impressive. Especially compared with the mere 3,000 or so sales of the number-two seller during the same time period, The Departed (on Blu-ray). The same movie on HD DVD takes up the number-five slot with 1,267 units sold. The eighth, ninth, and tenth best sellers that week don’t even hit 1,000! And if you scan the list of all next-gen disc releases, you find that only a very small handful even hit five figures within the first eight weeks of their release—the vast majority languishes below 5,000!



+ Add a Comment


Some do.

The most telling fact: they guys still come over to watch Blu-Ray on my 52" setup, rather than chowing down on better eats and "regular" definition on a similar size plasma at someone else's place. The format is superior, especially when used with HDMI 1.3, great sound and a profile 1.1 player.

In the "for the record dept" - because that is missing from the main point of the article, which is as close to the "why" as political polls are to the voting public. Accurate, but often missing the point.

Most of my movies I get from NetFlix. I bought Casino Royale and 3:10 to Yuma because they were worth watching again. With friends whenever.

The real problem is the content - the content not regarding how it is encoded.

The rest of the DVDs (well, most) were from NetFlix for a reason: they were worth watching once, just once, because most of the drivel coming entertainment industry isn't worth paying for. Most of what I own isn't going to be Blu-Ray, because it isn't box office material: classic movies, and a lot of period stuff based on classic books. They have real depth, real stories.

Most of what will come out on Blu-Ray, for some time, is just recent releases. I watch some of them, but what I enjoy most, including a 2nd or 3rd viewing, isn't those recent releases.

Then there's Planet Earth - on Blu-Ray. Now THERE is an example of why Blu-ray is worth it. But it isn't a box office hit.



We just got our entire VHS collection moved to DVD, does the entertainment industry really think that everyone is gonna go up and atem for two new fromats just as they make DVD the standard. Screw that... I hope these two go the way of BetaMax and Laserdisc...
Preston Everett Jurinak



Look behind you! A THREE-headed monkey!!!!!!!!

We had VHS vs Betamax, but does anyone remember SelectaVision? (I sure don't) Why did laserdisc fall by the wayside yet DVD became fully embraced? Who buys PSP?

Blue laser storage is the least of the worries right now. Up first is going to be the aftermath in 2009 when people still using rabbit ears (myself included) realize their TV doesn't work anymore. (Yeah, yeah, cable and satellite still works) It's going to be then that people will realize they'll have to start ponying up for TV's again, and that's when the industry will grab them by the berries with all the "extras" like flat screen, HD-DVD BluRay, 5.1 surround sound stuff. Oh sure, most of us on this site already know about this, but have you tried explaning it to Grandpa Alan?



The DVD format took 11 months for a disc to reach the sales that Casino Royale has posted in a matter of weeks. That DVD title was Air Force 1 , BTW. That's not so bad for these formats with "so little momentum behind the movement that it’s almost comical".
Turn the way back machine to 1997. HDTV? Nonsense. Most stores don't even carry non-hdtv's today. We still recorded our programs on Tape! That seems almost laughable now. Back then we were all clutching our VHS players as the preferred format and talking around the water cooler that the DVD format was going to remain a niche product to high end audio/video consumers, destined to have the same fate as the laser disc. Now look, it's outsold VHS. You can't even find a computer, game system, or consumer electronic without a DVD player anymore. Cars even have them.
HD formats will continue to grow and will only grow exponentially as the prices drop by the holidays this year and better titles, utilizing all the promised features of the formats, are delivered. Bugs will be worked out and HDTV's will be sold.
Walk into a local Best Buy. 1/8th to 1/4th of the TV's are 1080P compatible. 1/8th of the disc players on display are next gen formats. 2 of the three major consoles have next gen compatibility. Things won't be so comical for long.
With Blu-ray having three exclusive studios and all of the rest but Universal releasing in both formats, deeper market (and i use this term loosely on the internet) penetration, and the increasing decline of HD-DVD sales to the tune of over 2:1 this week makes it seem that this format war may not be going on for much longer.
But, HD-DVD may have a few tricks left up it's sleeve. We'll see.



They were giving Casino Royale away with ps3 purchases during this time. DVD is fine.



I believe that it's not so much that people aren't buying into the hype, it's that a lot of us are not about to drop thousands of dollars on "the next best thing" when in just a matter of months one of the two potential standards can dissapear, ala BetaMax.

IIRC, standard DVD's didn't really take off until players dropped below $200. Combo players are still rare & exceptionaly expensive, & with the exception of the X-Box 360 HD-DVD player, even the basic players for each standard are still to expensive for the masses to accept.

Give me a $250 dual format player & I'll be all over HD &/or Blu-Ray DVD's...

Log in to MaximumPC directly or log in using Facebook

Forgot your username or password?
Click here for help.

Login with Facebook
Log in using Facebook to share comments and articles easily with your Facebook feed.