Study: Retailers Anticipate Slow Blu-ray Sales to Continue
Although price points continue to fall and new features are being added—mostly to increase online options such as Netflix streaming and Amazon.com VOD—new research suggests some North American retailers are concerned that the new come-ons may not be enough to prompt recession-weary consumers to part with their money.
Possibly adding to the slowdown of Blu-ray player purchases also may be the less obvious difference (both perceived and real) between Blu-ray and standard DVD when compared to the last major format transition that occurred between DVD and VHS tapes.
According to Adams Media Research, retailers who believe consumers are holding back on making major electronic buys are voicing a more conservative outlook on this year's Blu-ray sales compared to some analysts who had confidently predicted that Blu-ray player sales would double this year over last. That's still possible, but appears less likely than a few months ago, depending on the shape of the economy for the always-crucial holiday sales season next fall.
One Texas electronics chain, Bjorn's, expects its Blu-ray player sales will equal about the same as in 2008, especially since its first quarter numbers this year are down from the same period a year ago.