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Stores worry about Blu-ray player forecasts

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 12 Apr 2009 12:13 User comments (10)

Stores worry about Blu-ray player forecasts While many analysts have predicted that the sale of Blu-ray set-tops will increase by double over the 2008 tally, VideoBusiness reported that concern is spreading among retail stores. New Blu-ray players include enhanced features over older players, such as being able to use Amazon Video on Demand, wireless connectivity and more, but in this global recession, some stores are questioning whether consumers will respond to the new features as hoped.
"Sales have definitely slowed in all categories," said Doug Bravin, chief operating officer at Texas electronics superstore Bjorn's. "Blu-ray players aren't setting the world on fire. But then nothing really is. We are planning on this being a tough year." Bravin expects sales of Blu-ray players from the store to be on par with 2008 and nothing more.

Even more enthusiastic stores think sales will hit 5 million units in 2009, which represents about a 5% - 10% drop from most analysts figures. Consumer electronics makers have been packing more features into their Blu-ray offerings, hoping to attract attention. Panasonic's $299 DMP-BD60 and $399 DMP-BD80 will be capable of streaming content from Amazon from June without any firmware upgrade required, and the company will also offer the $399 DMP-BD70 - a Blu-ray/VHS dual player, for example.

"Consumer electronics are nice to have, but they aren't something that people need to have. These are discretionary purchases," said David Workman, executive director of electronics buyer Pro Group. "Blu-ray is a great forward technology. But if consumers can delay making a purchase, they are going to. My expectations for Blu-ray are that the business will increase year over year, but I don't know if it will meet everyone's projections for it."

Blu-ray player sales might also be struggling because of an increase in the sale of flat-panel televisions, ahead of the digital TV switchover, which goes officially ahead in June in the U.S.

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10 user comments

113.4.2009 0:53

IMO, if you want the average customer to embrace Blu-ray then make the movies cheaper to buy and stop packaging the DVD with the Blu-ray to make every one think they are getting a good deal by getting the DVD, Blu-ray and a digital copy for $29.98

213.4.2009 8:16

Originally posted by ydkjman:
IMO, if you want the average customer to embrace Blu-ray then make the movies cheaper to buy and stop packaging the DVD with the Blu-ray to make every one think they are getting a good deal by getting the DVD, Blu-ray and a digital copy for $29.98
I think you're right. That has been a big deterrent for the ps3 ($60 games), and the high price of Blu-ray movies is going to have the same negative impact on the sales of standard Blu-ray players if they don't bring it down a bit.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 13 Apr 2009 @ 8:17

313.4.2009 10:17

Yeah, what happened to all the prophesies of cheap movies once the format war was settled... I use to get Blue Ray movies pretty regularly at $19.99 when there was competition with the HD format... now it $29 to $35...

413.4.2009 15:11

Blu Ray players will sell when they get under $100. Until then, they are considered too high end for most consumers.

513.4.2009 15:52
LissenUp
Inactive

Originally posted by ydkjman:
IMO, if you want the average customer to embrace Blu-ray then make the movies cheaper to buy and stop packaging the DVD with the Blu-ray to make every one think they are getting a good d


I couldn't agree more. Ditch the DVD part, and ditch the digital part too. I would guess only a teeny tiny percentage of people use either one of those after purchasing a Blu-ray.

Additionally, lower the prices of the player......ALL PLAYERS to below 200.00 Even that Denon one at 1800 should be down to 200 bucks.

Also, limit the "interactive" part of Blu-ray. People, 9 times out of 10 buy/rent a movie for one purpose............to watch the movie, not surf the web on their blu-ray player and get more content. Poll the consumer market and determine how many actually watch the extra features of a DVD. I used to and occasionally watch the deleted scenes but very very rarely.

613.4.2009 17:27
atomicxl
Inactive

For the way that I buy movies and DVDs (a new copy months after release and from an Amazon reseller), Blu-Ray isn't that expensive. I think that a major issue is still price. Rather than trying to shove every possible feature under the sun into a box so that you can sell it for $300, why not try to strip out like every possible feature to sell it for cheap?

BD-Live isn't critical. If it's updatable then use the cheapest method whether that be adding an ethernet port, a usb slot or expecting people to burn updates to DVD. If you need storage space, figure out what's cheaper: built in memory or something where you plug a jump drive into the player.

I think that's what the market needs.

Ultimate win would be where studio would sell me a 720p 4.5gb download of a movie. Probably in WMV since you can easily stream that a 360, PS3 to get it on your TV or use a laptop since HDMI out is starting to become the norm. They get the DRM they crave and I get a file that can play on any TV in my house, which is all that I care about.

714.4.2009 3:09
vanessa80
Inactive

You are right. I meet the same problem.
Thanks a lot.May be I found the answers.

I was here just to peddle SPAM

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Apr 2009 @ 13:25

814.4.2009 12:25

I agree about the price of movies. If someone is buying a HD movie, are they really looking for a SD copy of the movie to come with it? My PS3 has been my blu ray player for a year now, and it has not seen many blu ray movie discs. I happened to buy my PS3 primarily for gaming, so it doesn't really matter much to me. But for someone who is looking at spending $300 on a standalone blu ray player to see how expensive movies are seems like an immediate deterrant. A lot of money to spend on a device that may not see much use. That's about the time when one decides to price out streaming alternatives.

I just built a new rig, and I decided to invest $200 in a blu ray/HD DVD reader/burner. Ran a 15' HDMI cable from my GPU through my office wall and into my 46" HDTV. Gonna start purchasing tons of HD DVD's, because they are only $5 on Amazon. There is quite a collection that should hold me over until "pigs fly" and blu ray discs come down in price. $30+ for a movie is just ridiculous. I've even turned away from the $25+ movies.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Apr 2009 @ 12:27

914.4.2009 19:24

Originally posted by emugamer:
$30+ for a movie is just ridiculous. I've even turned away from the $25+ movies.
amazon has a huge buy 2-get 1 free sale on over 250 titles:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?ie...anandscathed-20

I ended up paying about $14 to $17 per title.

Hurry - sale ends April 24th.

1017.4.2009 15:14

I say build a Home Theater PC with Blu-Ray. That's all you need.

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