Propelled by encouraging market developments and increasing audience interest, consumer spending on Blu-ray Discs 3D (BD3D) in 2011 is forecast to rise 533 percent across the four markets of the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany and France, according to new IHS Screen Digest research.
Combined consumer spending on BD3D across these territories will reach $213.9 million this year, up slightly more than sixfold from $33.8 million in 2010, BD3D’s launch year. The 2011 expenditure is the result of a collective purchase of 7.5 million BD3Ds, a significant increase from the 1.1 million titles sold last year to consumers.
In 2014, BD3D consumer spending on BD3D is projected to reach $909 million, slightly more than four times the figure anticipated at the end of 2011, as shown in the attached chart. Some 41 million BD3Ds will be bought by consumers in 2014, a hefty increase of more than 445 percent from 2011.
“Consumers are snapping up BD3D titles because of a number of positive occurrences in the home 3-D segment,” said Richard Baxter, research analyst, video, at IHS. “These developments include increasing consumer awareness of 3-D technology, rising 3-D hardware sales and an expanding catalog of 3-D films for the home environment. Meanwhile, the arrival of more BD3D titles in retail stores will enhance the technology’s profile among consumers and encourage 3-D hardware adoption. BD3D-enabled households are also likely to buy more BD3D titles if they have a larger slate to choose from.”
BD3D-enabled households are defined as homes having a 3-D TV connected to either a Blu-ray Disc 3D player or to a PlayStation 3 video game console from Sony Corp., with the required glasses on hand in order to view content.
The BD3D titles discussed in this release are those that conform to the Blu-ray Disc Association’s BD3D trademark covering an explicit set of rules on what qualifies for the standard, such as the delivery of left- and right-eye images sequentially in full high-definition 1080p. As such, the consumer spend forecasts exclude any Blu ray Discs that may play 3-D images but do not adhere strictly to the association’s BD3D criteria, such as those using anaglyph images and disposable red/green glasses.
New BD3D titles in the offing
The increased number of BD3D titles is an important factor in boosting the public’s demand for home 3-D. The number of titles at retail was limited until September 2010, when more BD3D titles began to hit retail stores.
Movie studios are readying a slew of BD3D titles this year, with IHS forecasting more than 65 titles for the U.S. market. The Walt Disney Co. alone is planning to release at least 15 titles on BD3D, including the blockbusters “Tron Legacy” and “Tangled,” along with “Beauty and the Beast” and “The Lion King,” which have been converted from 2-D to 3-D. These Disney titles will offer further incentive to upgrade to home 3-D hardware.
Warner Bros. will release the final installment of the enormously profitable Harry Potter franchise, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part Two” in theatrical 3D in the summer of 2011. Reports that WB will convert three earlier films from the franchise have not been confirmed by the studio.
US market is largest, but big three in Europe also to grow rapidly
By far, the largest BD3D market in 2011 among the four Western countries discussed in this release will be the United States, accounting for 75.2 percent of consumer spending at $160.8 million, up from $28.4 million last year. U.S. consumers will buy 5.7 million BD3Ds this year at an average per-title price of $28.33, compared to the roughly 900,000 titles bought in 2010 at the higher price of $31.09. Some 3.2 million U.S. households in 2011 will be BD3D-enabled, compared to 790,000 last year, with the number expected to exceed 22.5 million in 2014, IHS Screen Digest research shows.
The United Kingdom, which is expected to have about 60 BD3D titles available by the end of 2011, will be the second-largest BD3D market of the four Western territories this year. U.K. consumer spending on BD3D will reach $25 million, up from $2.5 million last year. By 2014, spending will reach $91.2 million.
Germany will be the third-largest BD3D market out of the four countries in 2011 with $15.8 million in consumer spending, followed by France with $12.3 million. By 2014, consumer spending in Germany will reach $88.9 million, compared to $46.8 million in France.