According to Read/Write Web, a new study from Forrester Research has emerged that suggests that 2007 will bring about the end of significant growth in the online video sales market. What?!?!? I trust Forrester Research on a lot of things but in terms of online video sales I think they are slightly off. Although I disagree with the initial findings, there are some rational arguments against the growth of paid video download.
Video On-Demand From Cable Providers
Video on demand poses serious competition to web based video download sales. As the saying goes “couch potatoes will be couch potatoes.” Wait, is that a saying? Oh well! Either way as cable and satellite companies improve their technologies consumers will have rapid access to all video via their television. Let’s be honest, the majority of the world still prefers using their television over their computer. According to the recent Forrester report on social technographics a whopping 52% of the population is practically inactive on the net, or at least not significant participants.
Advertising Supported Video Services
Services such as Joost are paving the way for free video content delivered via the web, all supported by ad revenue. This is practically tv for your computer. (Speaking of which if you’d like to try out Joost than go fill out this form.) If you don’t mind flipping through the channels then you are good to go, but what if you don’t want to flip channels and there is a specific movie that you want to watch?
Consumers still want to watch their movies and tv shows on their own time. To suggest that we won’t see much growth in this is slightly skewed. Given that the technology still has yet to be perfected, and no online services are using bittorrent or similar technologies to increase the speed of download, I think we still have plenty of room to grow. While there are more people that want to watch videos in front of their television (or home theater), there are still a large number of people that want to watch video while on the go. If that market is saturated by the end of the year then Forrester is right, but I have to disagree on this one. I think this market is far from saturated and as we make it easier for web users to download videos quicker and more effortless we will be headed toward the peak. Apparently the Forrester research that was published a couple days ago thinks that we are closer to the peak than I do.