Best Buy, a major consumer-electronics giant, is reportedly going to stop its DVD and Blu-ray sales both in-store and online by early 2024.
In a decisive move reflecting the ongoing shift towards digital media consumption, Best Buy, one of the largest consumer-electronics retailers in the United States, is reportedly set to discontinue sales of DVDs and Blu-ray discs both in-store and online starting in early 2024. This decision was initially set in motion approximately nine months ago, signaling a significant departure from traditional physical media retail.
This info, revealed by The Digital Bits has just unveiled a significant change in the world of DVDs and Blu-rays. And guess what? Video games will likely be affected too. The interesting thing is that this shift isn’t limited to Best Buy’s physical stores—it also involves their bustling online platform. So, it’s a big deal all around! Target is purportedly following suit with similar reductions in this domain.
As of mid-2023, Best Buy maintained a commendable presence with 1,129 store locations, of which 969 were situated in the U.S. This strategic move by the retail giant aligns with recent events, as Netflix, a pioneer in DVD-by-mail services, recently shipped out its last DVDs to customers on September 29, allowing them to retain their final discs.
With Best Buy’s anticipated exit from the physical media market, Walmart, Amazon, and Target are poised to emerge as the leading U.S. retailers still offering DVDs and Blu-ray discs. Additionally, Redbox, now under the ownership of Chicken Soup for Soul Entertainment, continues to maintain a network of approximately 29,000 DVD rental kiosks nationwide.
Best Buy is making this change because streaming services have been taking over, and fewer people are buying DVDs and Blu-rays like they used to. It’s all about adapting to the times! According to data from the Digital Entertainment Group, U.S. physical media revenue plummeted by 28% to $754 million in the first half of 2023, in stark contrast to $1.05 billion in the corresponding period of the previous year.
Ingram Entertainment, a prominent DVD distributor, recently announced its decision to wind down operations after an illustrious 35-year tenure. The company has committed to supplying catalog products to customers through the fourth quarter of 2023.
Moreover, in a related development, Limited Run Games’ CEO, Josh Fairhurst, took to Twitter to suggest that there are speculations about Walmart potentially discontinuing the sale of physical Xbox games shortly too. While this may not have a significant impact on the PlayStation platform, where physical media still maintains a decent market share, it underscores the accelerating momentum of the digital transition across the industry.
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