Sales are of Sony’s (SNE) Blu-ray formatted discs will triple this year, predicts Pali Research’s Rich Greenfield (reg required). But that still won’t be enough to keep DVD sales from dropping 4% to 5%, this year, which comes on top of a 2% decline last year.
The DVD slump has been coming for years, and it’s the reason the studios were so eager to end the next-gen DVD format war: DVDs are their most crucial source of revenue, and they’re hoping that they can bump up sales again by getting consumers to upgrade their players, and discs. But Rich says they may have already lost their window to compete with the Web:
While Blu ray’s growth would normally be expected to slow the industry’s decline in 2009/2010, we are increasingly concerned about bandwidth increases (from cable MSOs and RBOCs) over the next couple of years that may increase the industry’s growing piracy problems. In addition, we are seeing an ongoing evolution in digital distribution (both paid download and advertising-supported models), which cannot be positive long-term for the physical formats such as the DVD.