Thursday March 30, 2006 7:19 pm
UMD Movies Near Death
A report from Reuters/Hollywood Reporter suggests that Sony’s UMD format, at least for movies, is nearly extinct. The article says that Wal-Mart is close to pulling UMD movies from its shelves, and other retailers are significantly cutting back on UMD purchases.
Even more damning are the quotes from movie executives. A Universal Studios Home Entertainment executive reportedly said, “It’s awful. Sales are near zilch. It’s another Sony bomb—like Blu-ray.” A failure pushing the UMD format for movies could reflect badly on Sony’s ability to execute in the Blu-ray arena; it was initially thought that by attaching the UMD format to the PSP could help drive the sales of UMD movies. Failure of this objective casts serious doubt on Sony’s plan to bootstrap Blu-ray’s success on the coattails of the PS3.
Even Sony Pictures Home Entertainment executives are scaling back their plans for UMD, and admit that there are drawbacks to the format: the inability to play UMD movies on the end-user’s television sets, and the ability to playback video content from the memory stick, saying ““I think a lot of people are ripping content and sticking it onto the device rather than purchasing.” Of course, the higher price points for UMD movies versus DVD media doesn’t help at all.
Read More | Reuters/Hollywood Reporter
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