Slowly but surely, DVD is becoming a format of the past. Specialists say that the format will exist for only several years. Digital technologies, Internet and USB flash drives will oust DVDs from the market in the near future. Hollywood companies already prefer not to invest in mass production of DVD releases. DVD sales and demand on this product continue to decline. The era of physical carriers of information is drawing to its end.
Walt Disney is cutting the personnel responsible for the distribution and sales of DVDs. Other film companies may follow Disney's example very soon. They already cut the production of DVD releases, although DVD sales previously guaranteed very good profits for those films that did not perform well in the box office.
New modern technologies such as digital distribution and legal movie market on the Internet put a colossal pressure on the DVD market nowadays.
Last year, the sales of DVD and Blu-ray disks in the States dropped by 20 percent. According to NPD analysts, the sales of such disks decreased by ten percent over six months and continue to decline. The volume of the market slipped from $2.6 to $2.1 billion in the first quarter of the current year.
Blu-ray and HD DVD are considered to be DVD's primary competitors. The formats still coexist, although experts say that Blu-ray discs will supersede DVDs already next year. In 2012, Blu-ray discs will concentrate 41 percent of global sales leaving only 21 percent to its predecessor.
According to Digital Entertainment Group, the number of Blu-ray players in US homes increased to 27.5 million in 2010, i.e. by 62 percent vs. the previous year.
However, physical discs already face a very serious competition - the Internet and digital content. It is not ruled out that Blu-ray discs and DVDs will soon become collectible merchandise, just like it happened to vinyl discs. The latter were ruling the world for as long as 50 years. In Russia, the production of vinyl records continued up to 1995.
Vinyl discs were replaced with audio tapes, whereas the tapes were later replaced with CDs. Plastic discs destroyed another format - video tapes, or VHS. The VHS era extended for 12-14 years. The era of the DVD is expected to be shorter.
The development of physical carriers began to decline with the invention of flexible or floppy disks. They came out of use many years ago, although the last flexible disk conveyor was stopped by Sony corporation only this year.
"I believe DVD will gradually stop its existence. We already can witness a speedy development of various online video content services. Physical carriers will not be able to win this war. I think the format will die in two or three years. I, for example, always thought that Polaroid cameras would die, but I didn't expect it would happen so quickly. They still make film for cameras, and DVDs will most likely be produced as well, although in much smaller volumes. A DVD disc will become like a collectible item. There are still many of those who listen to vinyl records. They say that the sound on a vinyl record is much clearer. Maybe there will be those who will be saying that the quality of DVD recording is much higher than that of a flash drive," German Klimenko, the director of LiveInternet said.