If Blu-ray is dying, why are disc sales soaring?

Blu-ray movie sales double in first quarter according to new report

Kogan Technologies Blu-ray Player

Kogan Technologies Blu-ray Player

Will Blu-ray finally get some respect? The high-definition optical disc format has long been the whipping boy of media pundits, many of whom predict consumers will spurn Blu-ray and gravitate instead toward video-on-demand, online download, and movie streaming services. Blu-ray is old school, they say, a relic of the bygone era of physical media, despite the fact that it bested challenger HD DVD in 2008 after a two-year high-def format war.

But don't nail Blu-ray's coffin shut just yet. A new study from Adams Media Research shows that sales of Blu-ray discs in the first quarter of 2009 nearly doubled compared to the same period a year ago, rising to nearly 9 million from 4.8 million in Q1 2008. Sales soared even though Blu-ray players and discs remain pricier than their DVD counterparts, although Hollywood studios have wisely begun to slash prices of some Blu-ray titles.

Does this mean Blu-ray has a future after all? It certainly appears so. Lower prices may be helping. Many Blu-ray players are now under US$200, and Blu-ray movies sell for a little as $10. The HD format displays a prettier picture-albeit not dramatically so-than the HD content delivered by video-on-demand and online movie download and streaming services.

Consumer adoption of HDTV is certainly helping Blu-ray, although many users may never upgrade from DVD, or else they'll opt for a less expensive DVD player that upconverts DVD movies to HD quality. Or, as some believe, they'll simply ditch the discs altogether. But if they abandon movies-on-disc, much as they've already abandoned audio CDs, what explains the dramatic increase in Blu-ray disc sales?

This year should show whether Blu-ray's got staying power, or whether it'll die off like HD DVD.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags blu-rayDVDHDnetflixHD DVD

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeff Bertolucci

PC World (US online)
Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >


Victorinox Werks Professional Executive 17 Laptop Case

Learn more >



Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?