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Report warns studios on downloads

PCScreen.jpgAccording to a Screen Digest report, the film download market will be worth an estimated US $1.3 billion in 2011, a date that's really not that far away.

As well as pointing out some startling figures for the potential revenues from this emerging marketplace, it also warns studios that if they aren't careful they could seriously damage the developing market of internet downloads and even harm their existing customer base.

The report from Screen Digest through Variety, predicts that the download business will account for three percent of the home movie entertainment revenue and will be split with US $572 million returns in Western Europe and US $720 million in the U.S. by 2011.

That's an interesting figure considering that currently the high definition DVD marketplace, for both formats, accounts for a mere tenth of a percent of the home movie entertainment revenue.

The report also states that of those two figures, and this is the most damning part of the report, for Western Europe $405 million and for the U.S. $530 million will be headed straight for the studios.

Now those figures do contradict the feeling in the film industry that they are facing ruin at the hands of a marketplace of downloading films. In fact it supports the idea that they should embrace it, and do it properly from the outset.

Indeed this is the only true way to lower piracy, not chasing after teenagers and other internet users who download some films illegally. Offer them a safer, easier, higher quality, and cheap way to see films for themselves.

The report's author gives an interesting quote at this point:

“How the studios react is crucial...It's a delicate balancing act between maintaining their relationships with their highly important DVD customer base -- the powerful retailers like Wal-Mart and Tesco -- while meeting growing consumer demand for immediate online downloads.”

Indeed, if they handle it correctly those revenues could be theirs, yet that means getting together and creating a single, workable model for downloading, and I don't see that happening soon when they can't even decide on the high definition formats.





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