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BizReport : Internet : March 26, 2012

Streaming movies online overtaking physical rentals

New research from IHS Screen Digest suggests that more movies will be watched online this year than on physical media. Meanwhile, LOVEFiLM has released figures from February that show its members stream more movies than they rent.

by Helen Leggatt

According to IHS Screen Digest, 3.4 billion online movie viewings will take place in 2012, up from 1.4 billion last year. At the same time, viewings of movies on physical media such as DVDs and Blu-ray are forecast to drop from 2011's 2.6 billion to 2.4 billion.

"We are looking at the beginning of the end of the age of movies on physical media," says Dan Cryan, IHS senior principal analyst, adding that "the transition is likely to take time: almost nine years after the launch of the iTunes Store, CDs are still a vital part of the music business."

Melovefilm-logo-2008.gifanwhile, Amazon-owned and Europe-based LOVEFiLM is reporting that February saw the first time in the company's history that streaming exceeded rentals. Up 200% on the previous February, LOVEFiLM's European members streamed 20% more film and television programs than rented DVDs, Blu-rays and games.

"The first quarter of 2012 has shown us two things: that LOVEFiLM members are watching more films and TV series both on the Internet and on DVD than ever before and; in less than three years, streaming through LOVEFiLM Instant has become more popular than renting DVDs," said Jim Buckle, Managing Director of LOVEFiLM.

Tags: download, DVD, movie, movie rental, online media, physical media, streaming

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  • eriksuperman

    Yup, streaming is definitely the way of the future.  I
    have a DISH account and the Blockbuster @ Home movie package, so I have access
    to over 100,000 titles by mail, in store or streaming live.  I also got a
    Sling Adapter for my HD DVR, and can now take all my live TV channels AND DVR
    with me when I leave the house.  It's fun to use, convenient and gives me
    complete control over my TV system.  I downloaded the free DISH Remote
    Access app for my iPad (works on dozens of other devices) and love how many options
    I have.  DISH even added another 6,000 streaming titles to the BB library
    last month, so it will definitely be a while until I'm looking for new content
    to watch!  My boss at DISH also told me the Sling Adapter is available for
    $30 to DISH subscribers, so you can even save money while ADDING to your TV
    system.  DISH just gives me the most options to enjoy my TV!

  • It is certain that the future will be all online and the physical products will disappear. For example, I didn't buy any DVD or CD for last 2 years and ordered all of them as streams.



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