Some in the U.S. may have decried an overemphasis on 3D entertainment content recently -- but one research report believes the overall growth global
prospects will be strong in the coming years.
Consumer spending on 3D entertainment -- in cinema, home video, and video-on-demand -- will total $2.0 billion in 2012 in the U.S., up 8.5% from $1.9 billion in 2011. This is according to an IHS Screen Cross Platform Intelligence report.
Much of the 3D growth comes from international expansion, with global 3D theatrical screens up fourfold over three years to 43,000 screens in the third quarter of 2012, from 9,000 screens in 2009. Plus, 3D global box-office revenues continued to rise -- $7.0 billion in 2011, up 16% from 2010. Revenues from 3D theatrical business are 22% of worldwide box-office receipts in 2011, it was 19% in 2010.
International markets account for a rising share of the worldwide 3D box office -- 73% in 2011, up from 66% in 2010 and 54% in 2009. It also says theatrical 3D screens have doubled in China to 8,000 as of the third quarter of this year versus the same period in 2011.
But some areas in the U.S. continue to be strong. IHS says, for example, that U.S spending on Blu-ray 3D nearly doubled in 2012 from last year’s levels. All this bucks the overall declining spending trend on the physical sales of 3D videos, the report says.
Perhaps the fastest-growing segment could be video-on-demand. IHS says U.S. consumers will spend $76.1 million for 3D VOD by 2016, up from $11.1 million this year. European consumers will spend $32.4 million in 3D VOD in three years, compared to $3.5 million in 2012.
Tony Gunnarsson, analyst for video at IHS Screen Digest, stated: “The continuing expansion of the industry is especially significant when one considers that 3D is but a small niche of overall digital viewing."