Consumers may not have spent as much but according to The Digital Entertainment Group (DEG), "software shipments and hardware sales both achieved record highs" in the First Quarter of 2007.

In a story from The Hollywood Reporter, it seems that "suppliers shipped 414 million DVDs into the market during the first three months of this year, up nearly 5% from the first quarter of 2006>." In addition to this, "consumers bought more than 8 million DVD players, beating by 3% the previous record, set in the first quarter of 2006, according to data from the Consumer Electronics Assn., retailers and manufacturers."

In fact, according to the numbers since DVDs format launch 10 years ago, "consumers have bought more than 203 million DVD players. The DEG estimates that of the 90 million DVD-equipped households, 56% own more than one player."

Looking at the software, "more than 7.6 billion DVD units have been shipped into the marketplace since the format's March 1997 launch."

However, "DVD sales to consumers in the first quarter slipped 8% from the first quarter of last year, according to Nielsen VideoScan data."

Many in the industry "attribute the decline to the fact that studios last year pumped most of their hot theatricals out in the fourth quarter, leaving a meager assortment of titles for January, which in recent years has become such a strong video month that it became known as the 'fifth quarter.'"

This "'fifth quarter' phenomenon developed during DVD's boom years. Each year, studio marketers would target the millions of new DVD households that had come online during the previous holiday season with a rich slate of high-powered theatricals. But now that the market has matured and most U.S. households already have at least one DVD player, studios are more inclined to push out their big titles before Christmas."

Evan Jacobs at Movieweb
Evan Jacobs