Way back when before the PS3 was released, we argued pretty relentlessly on here about how Blu-Ray would be wiped out by streaming. This was before any of the places like Netflix were streaming content. The problem with foresight is that people have fears that what they own now is going to be taken away and so there is resistance to accept change. Change will happen, Blu-Ray sales will become so marginalized that they will go away completely.
You think not? You think that there are people who don't have high speed Internet, don't want to pay to stream content, like to own the disc, the quality isn't as good, etc, etc.
All of that is true, and all of that doesn't matter when a company is trying to make money selling content.
The fact is, disc sales will deplete as more and more content is available on demand. It will not be profitable for companies to sell discs. Why pay the Blu-Ray licensing fees, the manufacturing fees for the disc and boxes and cover art, not to mention the royalties to put out the discs, when you can just stream?
Right now, it makes sense, they make money, but it is waning.
By the next console cycle, disc will be dead. Blu-Ray, DVD, and all physical mediums except memory cards (Which should be gigantic) will be dead.
That's around 7 years from now, so you have time to build your Blu-Ray library, though it'll feel outdated soon when 4K versions of all your favorite films are released, and you now have the inferior copy of the film. People will be able to stream a higher quality copy of the move you own on disc.
I own Blu-Rays and continue to buy them, but it's dated technology and it's heading for the wall sooner than anticipated.
nah. streamed media usually isn't permanently stored, I believe there is still a large segment of the market that wants to "own" or "keep" their favourite TV series' and films.
streamed content is not as good in terms of audio or video quality, period. i know they claim it is "1080p" or even "4K" but it is the codec that matters largely. these videos will be compressed and tainted. not saying they are horrible, they are all fine but if i'm going to pay to watch a film then I feel like I should own the best copy, not something that was uploaded to youtube and went through a couple filters and compression schemes before arriving on my screen.
I also am a bit cagey with 4K. I know it will only go down in price but the leap is quite substantial. We don't even stream everything in 1080 today and certainly not in "blu ray" quality codecs. 4K can be streamed today but it will not be the same video stream as you get from a disc and typically this is more noticeable at higher resolutions and on larger screens which is even more worrying.
I'm still a strong believer in physical media and feeling like I own my music, movies, and games. I think it would be cool if the industry moved to flash drive based media, where you could just pop a USB flash drive into the USB port on a television/game console/whathaveyou and have it play whatever content is on it. I read some article that there was a movie studio experimenting with FL-ROMs (Flash-ROMs) and they had a movie on it, but it was like a Read-Only flash drive.
Physical media will go away when ISPs stop playing games with download speeds, implementing silly monthly bandwidth caps, or lobbying congress to block broadband improvements such as fiber (I.E. Google Fiber, or alternative smaller new ISPs that have pooped up in Google's wake that are also rolling out fiber).
Basically in a nutshell, if the internet service provided is sub par or limited, someone would rather either just buy a bluray or rent a movie from a Redbox. If download speeds are fast, and bandwidth is not capped, people are going to choose the convenience of digital distro as it enables them to not even leave the comfort of their home when they want to watch or play something new.
Digital distro and streaming such as Steam and Netflix is the future, however whether it happens sooner or later is unfortunately up to the ISPs if they continue to try to block innovation.