While much of the news lately has surrounded subscription
internet movie and TV services the video on-demand market was up nearly 40% last year and is expected to keep growing. According to stats from IHS Screen Digest, video revenue for the Apple iTunes
store grew 60 percent last year, but saw its overall market share shrink from 74.4 to 64.5 percent. This is mostly explained as a side affect of the Kinect driving up Microsoft Xbox 360 sales at the end of last year and introducing its Zune store to a new market of families looking for digital entertainment. The up and comer to watch for 2011 appears to be the Wal-mart/Vudu combo, currently fourth in line behind Sony but poised to grow by showing up on more devices
and increasing its promotional efforts
. Of course, as NewTeeVee
points out, the ultimate wild card in all of this is the launch of Ultraviolet buy-once/watch-anywhere DRM later this year
(without support from Apple or Disney) and the effect it could have by causing consumers to see digital downloads as a viable option instead of the fragmented mess they are now -- good luck with that.