DVD Disc Sales Top 25 Million for 1999

As reported last week, more than 1.1 million DVD-Video players were shipped through the first half of 1999. Additional information released by the DVD Video Group puts these numbers in perspective: DVD-Video experienced 300% growth in the second quarter of 1999, when more than 730,000 hardware units were shipped (compared to 170,000 in the second quarter of 1998). Further, the Group says that shipments for the first six months of 1999 constitute an increase of 881,000 units over the same period in 1998, also representing more than 300% growth. (Over 1 million units shipped in the first half of 1999; in the first six months of 1998, slightly more than 260,000 units shipped.)

DVD has been on the market for just over two years, and the Group says there are now more than 2 million players installed in consumer homes, compared to 500,000 units by mid-year 1998. The Consumer Electronics Manufacturers' Association (CEMA) estimates that total shipments for 1999 will exceed 3 million hardware units. The installed base is expected to grow to between 3.5 and 4 million hardware units by the end of 1999.

According to figures released last week by the Group, more than 25 million DVD discs have been shipped to retail outlets so far this year—nearly the same amount that shipped in all of 1998. More than 56 million DVD-Video movies and music videos have shipped to retail since the format launched in spring 1997. The Group says that disc sales are expected to remain strong throughout the year, as witnessed by the more than 200 new titles being released each month. Currently, more than 3300 titles are available; the DVD Video Group projects that there will be nearly 5000 available for rental and sell-through by the end of 1999.

The DVD Video Group's chairman, Emiel N. Petrone, states that "obviously, the consumer continues to embrace DVD-Video as their video experience of choice. Sales of both DVD-Video hardware and software have been extremely successful, making DVD the fastest-growing consumer-electronics product in history."