Online Movies: Apple Leads

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  1. Rickaren

    Rickaren New Member Staff Member

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    Online Movies: Apple Leads; Look Out for Vudu
    By Swanni

    Washington, D.C. (February 8, 2011) -- Apple is still dominating in the category of online movie sales, but competitors such as Microsoft, Sony and Vudu are showing signs of catching up.

    That's according to a study by research firm iSuppli.

    Measuring just online movies downloaded to own -- not online rentals, where Netflix is the dominant player -- iSuppli says Apple's iTunes stores generated 64.5 percent of all sales. However, the company had 74.4 percent of all online movie sales in 2009.

    Microsoft, which sells movies online via its XBox gaming system and Microsoft Zune, remained in second place, but its market share jumped from 11.6 percent to 17.9 percent.

    Sony, which sells movies online through the PlayStation 3 player and select Sony Bravia HDTVs, is still in third but it also increased its market share, from 5.7 percent in 2009 to 7.2 percent in 2010. All other competitors, including Vudu, which is now owned by Wal-Mart, also increased market share, from 8.3 percent ot 10.4 percent.

    Despite the increasing competition, iSuppli says Apple has been able to keep its top standing because of the success of the iPad and the recent improvement in sales of the new Apple TV streaming TV device.

    But the research firm noted that Wal-Mart's Vudu could pose a serious threat to Apple's position in the coming year or two.

    "The future of the online movie business may come down to a competitive battle between Wal-Mart and Apple," says iSuppli. "Although Wal-Mart is not on the charts yet, the company soon will become a major player if its current momentum continues."

    Vudu, which boasts of an extensive library of HD movies, is now available on various devices, including Blu-ray players.

    iSuppli said online movie sales increased 60 percent in 2010, but the company did not release actual sales numbers. Other surveys have shown that Net movie sales still lag well behind disc sales.


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