Tuesday, September 20, 2005


Seriously, I don't understand. Why are people clamoring to pay full price to buy movies that are exclusively viewable on a tiny (albeit portable) screen? Isn't anybody playing games on this device?

Play It Again, Sony
Sony is discovering surprisingly strong demand for movies being released in the UMD format, which can only be played on its PlayStation Portable device. Two releases have sold more than 100,000 copies each within two months. (Newsweek observes that it took nine months for the first movie on DVD to reach that mark.) Sony is also finding new outlets for the UMD movies that it doesn't have with DVDs as game retailers add the movies to their offerings. The premium price for the DVDs is also reportedly offsetting lower sales for DVDs.

Do people like these movies so much that they'll buy them twice? Or are their lives so fast-paced that they know they'll never sit down and watch it on a TV set? I'm really struggling to understand the appeal.


Zack said...

Well, for starters, the PSP is being targeted at adult male early adopter tech geek "everything I own is black" types. These people have, adjusted for income, the sluttiest wallets in the world.

Also, once they've bought the PSP, they have to justify it with media purchases to use their new system with. What else are they gonna get but UMD movies? It's not like there are many games for the system. Oh, snap!


I don't really get the appeal of UMDs either. Nor did I get the appeal of portable DVD players. Well, some people have money burning a hole in their pockets, and the PSP is there for them, like the Neo Geo was in years past, like anime on laserdisc was there in years past. Like GPS units, like satellite radio. You get the picture. Satellite radio isn't targeted at music fans. It's targeted at people who like to spend money.

matt said...

Satellite radio is also targeted at people who are sick and tired of the government getting in their business.

I agree that conspicuous consumption is a big part of otherwise unjustifiable media gadget buys. But that wasn't enough for satellite radio, which didn't get a big boost until Howard Stern's announcement.