Online video revenue will surpass DVDs and theaters before 2018

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As streaming services like Netflix continue to grow at a ridiculous pace, it’s only a matter of time before online video surpasses physical media in terms of revenue, similar to what happened to the PC gaming market. According to PricewaterhouseCooopers, that’s actually going to happen before the year is over, and online video will even manage to surpass theater revenue sometime in 2017. 

Spending on movie downloads and video streaming subscriptions in the U.S. will surpass purchases and rentals of DVDs for the first time this year, according to a report Tuesday from PricewaterhouseCooopers LLP. Electronic home-video revenue will climb 13 percent to $9.5 billion this year, while physical sales drop to $7.8 billion, the consulting firm said. By 2017, the electronic revenue will reach $12 billion, at which point it will exceed the U.S. film box office, according to the report. The accounting firm’s annual outlook for media and entertainment shows that while overall spending will continue to climb, technological shifts in the way content is delivered are creating winners and losers. Music streaming, for example, will overtake the still relatively new business of digital purchases of songs by 2018. Digital revenue will account for 45 percent of all spending on books by that date. Global media and entertainment revenue is predicted to rise at a 5.1 percent annual rate through 2019, reaching $2.23 trillion, the company said.

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