Strong demand for 4K but US home entertainment spending stays flat in Q1 | Ratings/Measurement | News | Rapid TV News
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Consumer spending on home entertainment in the US was stable for the first quarter of 2016 compared to the year earlier period, going so far as to outperform the box office.

4kAccording to Digital Entertainment Group,  total US home entertainment spending was nearly $4.6 billion for the first quarter of 2016, flat over the same period 2015 and outpacing the box office value on video release by nearly 10 percentage points.

HDTV penetration, for its part, is approaching saturation levels. Nearly 95% (104 million) of all US homes have at least one HDTV. All Blu-ray playback devices (including set-tops and game consoles) are in more than 84 million US households, the firm noted.

But that doesn’t mean that growth isn’t on the horizon: DEC found ample evidence for uptake in next-gen technologies. Consumers have purchased more than seven million 4K UltraHD TVs to date in the brief period since the product came to market, and more than 1.5 million 4K Ultra HD TVs sold in the first quarter, up 210%. That, in turn, is sparking strong demand for UHD content.

With 26 4K UHD Blu-ray releases available in the first quarter, 4K UHD discs experienced impressive sales, the firm said, with consumers buying more than 80,000 discs in their first weeks of launch. This number is twice that of Blu-ray Discs sales in its first weeks of launch.

Meanwhile, video on-demand (VOD) platforms continued to grow in the period, up 7% for the quarter, reversing the downward trends seen in early 2015. Subscription VOD (SVOD) had strong growth, with a 19% rise for the first quarter over the first quarter of 2015.

Electronic sell-through (EST) however saw growth that slowed to 4% in the quarter due to a smaller slate of new releases but continues to see robust catalogue growth. DEG’s year-end 2015 report found that consumer spending on home video entertainment in the US reached $18 billion for the whole of last year.