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Blu-ray to boom despite downturn

Analyst forecasts 100 per cent sales growth

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World+Dog will buy more than twice as many Blu-ray Disc players this year than the number sold in 2008, it has been claimed.

According to market watcher Futuresource - a long-time Blu-ray advocate - 12m Blu-ray Disc players will be bought in 2009 in addition to Sony PlayStation 3 consoles and PC-oriented optical drives.

By comparison, some 3m machines were sold in Q4 2008 - a figure that Futuresource said was more than half of all the players sold that year, putting 2008's total at less than 6m, making for year-on-year growth of more than 100 per cent, if Futuresource's 2009 sales forecast proves correct.

It said it expects 6m BD players to be bought in Q4, up from 1.2m in Q1 and 4.8m in Q2 and Q3 combined.

Falling prices will drive this growth, which comes despite the world economic downturn.

“In the last quarter of 2008, average retail prices for standalone Blu-ray players fell by 15 per cent in most major markets," said Futuresource researcher Jack Wetherill, "and we’re going to see them fall by another 25 per cent during the course of this year.

"Add to that the raft of movie titles being issued on Blu-ray – over 1100 at the end of last year, on track to more than double this year – coupled with the increase in promotional activity and the continued benefit of growing PS3 ownership, and we’ll see Blu-ray continue to gather momentum in all major markets across the globe.” ®

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