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Good times ahead for DVD

Software releases will be deciding factor though

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According to research undertaken by the media journal, Screen Digest, more than one million DVD players will be in use across Europe by the end of the year 2000. The magazine estimates that some 125,000 DVD players have already found good homes to go to this Christmas, with that number expected to rise to around 485,000 this time next year. The main driver for this growth in demand will be the DVD discs - the big names of the music and film industries will have to throw their weight behind the format and release the right titles. The report, DVD Video: European market assessment and forecast 1998-2000, predicts that 1.4 million DVD discs will be sold across Europe by the end of this year -- a figure which will grow rapidly to around 15 million in 2000. In time for this Christmas, some 135 DVD movies and music videos are available in the shops. This number is expected to hit the 400 mark almost immediately though. But despite this increase in demand, DVD is still in its infancy, the report says. Looking at the number of titles on release, the report points to the US market where over 2000 music and film DVD are available. Public perception is also a potential stumbling block, it claims. Only two per cent of European adult males know what DVD is, the report says -- in the US this figure stands at 44 per cent. France has become Europe's early adopter of all things DVD, with Germany in second place and the UK in third. ®

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