Is Blu-ray here to stay?

Everywhere you go these days, whether a retail bookstore, WalMart and even small mom-and-pop shops that carry DVD titles are giving way to Blu-ray discs.

DVDs are disappearing fast and are quickly reaching a collector item status. Ok, we may be a little dramatic, but you get the point.

With incredible recent developments in digital technology, is Blu-ray really here to stay? Or will it be a short-lived experiment, about to be written off as the last tangible “hard” media?

First, a few facts about Blu-ray:

The Blu-ray format was introduced in the late 2000, however, was only commercially released by 2006 (2003 in Japan, they are always ahead of us!)

Between the years 2006 and 2009, Blu-ray was immersed in the notorious “format war” with HD-DVD in a dynamic that vastly resembles the VHS/Betamax format wars of the 80s. Apparently, every generation need their own format war.

With the official retreat of HD-DVD, and the victory of Blu-ray, it was then settled and slowly penetrated the market.

Blu-ray titles sales in North America (US & Canada) have grown from 1.2 million in 2006 to 177.2 million in 2009. In addition, projections are forecasting that by the end of 2011, 50 million homes will own Blu-ray players. That will represent more than 40%!!!

In addition, the advent of Blu-ray 3D adds a whole new dimension to the equation, pun intended. Some projections estimates that by 2015, 3D TVs will be in more than 60% of US households and 3D Blu-ray players will be in more than 75%.

Now, that’s not too shabby for a format that just recently survived a war and that has been put to death by many pundits time and time again.

So what is it in this blue laser technology that it just won’t quit?

While it is clearly open to interpretations, we at Advanced Media believe it is derived from 3 different aspects:

Generational – older demographics have more spending abilities and are used to buy tangible media (ownership). They want to enjoy their favorite films, as well as new releases in HD with cool interactive menus. These people will drive the market.

Quality – it is hard going back to DVD after getting used to Blu-ray. It is like stepping back from First Class to Coach in a midst of a packed flight.

Adaptability – people are still slow to embrace digital-only solutions. It is certainly happening, and we anticipate a day without any optical discs, yet we do not anticipate it any time soon.

We believe that the Blu-ray technology is here to stay for the foreseeable future. We have had no particular bias when writing this blog, and after gathering the statistics, we were left fairly surprised with our conclusion.

We like Blu-ray. It’s a good format. It’s clean and it’s available. And reliable too. Give it a good spin, kick back and enjoy.

Of course, we could be wrong ;-)


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