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Studio execs believe downloads are a "long way off" from replacing DVD

Ben Drawbaugh

Who doesn't dream of the ability to watch whatever we want, whenever we want, in the highest quality we can get? We realize we have to wait for this home media utopia, but we would like to know, how long the wait is? A few of people in this world that have the ability to delay our dreams (Hollywood studio execs) were on a panel last week at the Content Delivery and Storage Assn. conference, and one of the few things all four panelist agreed on was that downloads and streaming was a long way off from supplanting DVDs. The panelist went on to explain that the reason was limited bandwidth available to most, but we'd beg to differ. Not that we expect them to admit the real reason, which is probably because they haven't figure out how to replace DVD revenues. The problem for Hollywood is that if you had the ability to watch any movie you wanted, whenever you wanted, for $3 or $4, then why would you ever buy another DVD for $20? So in other words, one of the main reasons why downloads and streaming hasn't been more successful is because of 30 day release windows and 24 hour viewing limits. This is where the business world and consumers don't see eye to eye, while we are looking for the next great thing in home media, they are looking for a way to increase profits -- not that we have a problem with that, just saying.

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