DVD Software Breaks Greatest Weekly Sales Record

Last week, we announced the stats on DVD players, which have proven to be one of the hottest format launches in consumer-electronics history. This week, we follow up with recent numbers on DVD software. The results show that, four weeks before the all-important Christmas holiday shopping season, shoppers spiked DVD software sales as they snapped up movies and music videos over the Thanksgiving weekend.

According to VideoScan, total DVD software sales for the week ended November 28, 1999, were nearly 817,000 units, exceeding last year's Christmas holiday-week sales (722,000 units) by more than 13%. The numbers reveal that the digital format experienced its greatest software sales for a single week since launching in spring 1997—nearly a 68% increase over sales through to consumers during the 1998 Thanksgiving week. The DVD Video Group estimates that there are more than 3.5 million DVD players installed in homes, and predicts that there will be well over 4 million DVD players in homes by year's end.

Although many popular titles were released for the shopping season last week, VideoScan maintains that the best sellers were still popular holdouts from previous weeks. Now in its 10th week of release, The Matrix tops the list of the 20 best-selling DVD-Video titles for the week ended November 28, 1999. Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me placed second.

VideoScan says that an additional factor contributing to this year's sales spike is the growing number of titles that initially shipped more than 1 million units, including The Matrix, Titanic, Saving Private Ryan, and The Spy Who Shagged Me.