Balancing Disc and Digital - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 08-29-2012, 07:17 AM
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Default Balancing Disc and Digital

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With the fourth quarter fast approaching, it will be interesting to see how the two facets of our sellthrough business — packaged media and electronic sellthrough — play into each other.

The fourth quarter, of course, is prime gift-giving season, a time period in which studios traditionally generate about 40% of their annual home entertainment revenue. And a prime driver behind pre-holiday DVD and Blu-ray Disc sales is the impulse market. That’s why you see such a hullaballoo around dating. Some studios want to be out early, hoping repeat impressions will get customers to pick up their title or titles. Others, fearful of being pulled from prime shelf-space spots after three or four weeks, choose to wait until December, hoping to snag choice positioning just as the harried last-minute gift shopper enters the store and frantically begins filling his shopping cart.

Digital downloads have never really been a factor. There’s less perceived “gift value,” if you will, of a $25 or even $50 iTunes gift card slipped into a stocking in comparison to a neatly wrapped DVD or Blu-ray Disc of The Amazing Spider-Man or The Dark Knight Rises.

But with both VOD and video streaming finally gaining traction and electronic sellthrough, buoyed by UltraViolet, promising to become a real business rather than an afterthought, studios are looking more and more toward digital distribution for future growth of the overall home entertainment business.

And in their enthusiastic push of fancy new DVD and Blu-ray Disc configurations of the big summer tentpoles, as well as elaborate gift sets, catalog collections, TV series and other programming aimed at holiday gift buyers, they’re going to have to be careful not to give digital the proverbial short shrift.

My hunch is that studio marketers are going to look for common ground, a way to continue to promote digital without taking focus away from the hot packaged-media commodities that will generate the lion’s share of their fourth-quarter revenue (and profit).

And finding that balance won’t be easy, particularly with so many bundled gift sets either already out there or waiting in the wings. After all, it makes more sense for Warner Bros., to cite just one example, to promote Batman Begins and The Dark Knight on disc when The Dark Knight Rises arrives in stores. Similarly, Sony Pictures would be smart to promote the previous “Spider-Man” trilogy on disc when The Amazing Spider-Man makes its DVD and Blu-ray Disc debut this fall instead of steering customers to the digital versions.

It may take a whole new way of looking at things. Just as in the old days, just before and right after DVD, when we pegged certain movies as a “rental title” or a “sellthrough title,” we may have to categorize movies as bringing optimal value back to the studio in either physical or digital form.

That won’t be easy — but in this business, it seems, nothing ever is.
http://www.homemediamagazine.com/tks...sc-and-digital
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Old 08-29-2012, 11:30 AM
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If someone got me a digital copy of a movie I'd be pissed. Sure I'd play nice smile and thank them, but as soon as the holiday was over I'd be right back at whatever store sold them the damn thing. Digital copies have their place, however it's not underneath the Christmas tree.
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Old 09-01-2012, 12:50 PM
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I agree wholeheartedly for the most part, except I do have family members who'd rather a digital copy of anything, they will use vudu / ultraviolet less so iTunes. They gone mostly digital with their movies, some ripped, some downloaded, some vudu (that can be downloaded), some netflix (mostly tv shows), they don't like to mess with discs any more, rather have it all at the push of a button.

I like that convenience but rather a real disc, primary because I am a audio and video enthusiast, I want the best picture and sound when I watch a movie especial for the first time.

I am afraid my relatives are more indicative of what is becoming popular in our culture, ease of use rather than quality.
I'd bet the new Xbox and PlayStation next year will be friendly to MKVs and other digital format play back, replacing WD live hubs and other similar players who do both physical formats and digital.

One aspect I find funny about the studio push for digital cloud movies is the lack of complaints from the directors, back in the format war these self-righteous directors would piously exhort the new format, chided movie fans that this (or that) is how they intended their movies to be seen so this is how you the consumers should buy this movie.
Yet now the studios are pushing a very lackluster digital standard these same directors are mute.
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Old 09-11-2012, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TripleHBK View Post
If someone got me a digital copy of a movie I'd be pissed. Sure I'd play nice smile and thank them, but as soon as the holiday was over I'd be right back at whatever store sold them the damn thing. Digital copies have their place, however it's not underneath the Christmas tree.
If you looked around and observed how many items are discless and how popular they are with the younger generation, you would come to some realization that there is a reason why Blu ray will peak in sales this year and OD will continue to plummet year after year.
Digital copy is becoming the preferred medium. Take the blinders off sometime and look at the advertising for upcoming movies and how much it is mentioned that iTunes will sell the digital copy version.

Of course this is entirely my own opinion and is not intended to be taken as anything more than anecdotal.

(This is the only web forum where a disclaimer is required:doh2:.)
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Old 09-11-2012, 11:24 AM
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Whoops, did not realize that no one posted for 10 days!! May not get a response to my post for awhile!! LOL.
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Old 09-11-2012, 01:08 PM
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I can see how the market is changing, but I do wonder what will happen with consumer confidence in digital media when the inevitable happens, and one of the major players goes under/is bought out. Suddenly, the "collection" that people have could just be gone. A major shakeup like this has yet to happen, but it's only a matter of time until it does. Consumer IP rights have never been truly tested for digital content, and it's going to be a mess when it does.

Those with physical copies are by-and-large immune to this, and more importantly, the rights of consumers in regards to physical products have been well defined by the courts in most industrialized nations.

For now, digital is a bright light ahead, but caveat emptor...it might be a train coming.
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Old 09-11-2012, 02:27 PM
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There have been examples of that already but the examples had minimal impact precisely because consumers never embraced digital. Walmart stopped selling music, as did Yahoo. Microsoft stopped supporting the Zune hardware for apps and subscription music. But the number of consumers impacted was minimal (which likely lead to the decisions to abandon ship in the first place).
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