back to article Sony takes $1bn writedown: Streaming has killed the DVD star

DVD and Blu-ray income has collapsed faster than Sony expected, obliging the company to take a $976m (Y112bn) impairment on its movie business. Sony’s movie and TV boss stepped down earlier this month. Sony took an impairment charge on the same business in 2014 as the “demand for physical media was contracting faster than …


  1. Graham 7

    I guess this validates and justifies Sony's decision for the PS4 Pro to not include a 4K UltraHD BluRay drive.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Quite right,

      so instead they made the console suddenly go all black for 5 seconds as a mark of respect?!?!?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Quite right,

        Huh? or are you talking about those handful of PS4 pro owners with Binatone4K tv's that have problems??

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Absolutely, however nobody in the media will ever acknowledge that, that want two bites at the clickbait cherry.

      Sony didn't include UHD drives, as they know physical media is dead,they saw the numbers.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Short Window of Opportunity...

    If Technology has such high development costs, pretty much known shelf life, why do these companies continue to charge over the odds premium for that medium. Blu-ray could have had far more years of mainstream sales than it did.

    Apple need to licence macOS to 'signature' PC makers, to stop that too dying a short limited death. Prices are just too high, its heading for a very niche market, when it doesn't need to. There are hundreds of thousands out there that would use macOS if the costs were on par with Windows 10,

    Apple, just licence it for Education use / VMWare use to start with (as a subscription). Price is making it far too niche for its own good.

    1. JLV

      Re: Short Window of Opportunity...

      Yeah, gotta agree with the problem here.

      Maybe it's the CAD $ exchange rate, but $3500 CAD gets you a... moderately well appointed Mac Book Pro laptop. 512GB SSD, 15" screen, 16GB RAM. All soldered in. When I bought my 2011 MBP, the Apple price premium was about 30% (2500$ MBP with specs of a 2000$ laptop). Now it's way more than 30%.

      I think the problem is the obsession with small size, coolness factor, retina. But an MBP, esp at that price, should kinda allow... development, not just Starbucks FB browsing.

      Honestly, even at $2500 CAD, these are NOT machines I am salivating over. That may not be such a big deal for Apple in pure $$$ terms, but what if their developer base/power users generally head elsewhere?

      Next time around, I'd consider a well-built, high-price, fully-supported (maybe through overlaying some hardware-specific stuff on an LTS distribution?) Linux laptop, where I have to do as little thinking about hardware and drivers as I do on a Mac. Most of the time, I am on bash or Sublime anyway so a switch isn't a big deal.

      The solution? Not sure. Don't see much upside from Dell/HP macos laptops and licensing didn't work out well for Apple (and the licensees) in the past.

      How about... true market differentiation (between its customers) from Apple?

      Big a** laptops, 17". Lots of ports. Swap-able components. Not small. You know, for folks who do other shit than browse FB and send each other iMessages.

      1. Adam 1

        Re: Short Window of Opportunity...

        > Lots of ports.

        Why would anyone need lots of ports when they can easily spend 100 quid on a flaky adaptor that has had Cupertino holy water sprinkled on it?

  3. Speltier

    Am I Missing Something?

    Why are the movies bosses stepping down? This implies that Sony is not managing to monetize the movie via streaming vs. the income from physical media.

    In other words, if you buy physical media, you are being soaked by Sony... just driving more people to streaming media.

    1. Dwarf Silver badge

      Re: Am I Missing Something?

      Read up on Japanese culture - its all about honour.

      If only the same thing happened over here, then the poor performing senior managers would be out on their ear. Companies like TalkTalk might even turn the corner.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Am I Missing Something?

        "If only the same thing happened over here, then the poor performing senior managers would be out on their ear."

        They are - but they move in that charmed circle where another company will then employ them to implement the same failed strategy. The eoriginal company meanwhile plucks someone else from the same pool. ....and round and round it goes....

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Am I Missing Something?

        "Read up on Japanese culture - its all about honour."

        You drank the cool-aid and watched "The Last Samurai".

        Incestuous suicidal supremacists are generally considering niche. In Japan, can you still legally beat your wife?

        Nice place to visit, ...

    2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Am I Missing Something? ..... The Hollywood American Dream Machine

      Sony Japan needs to realise the force that is televisualised artistic operations that precede reactions virtually and which then practically leads audiences and populations with future presentations. IT and media program mass management is all about the script and unfolding narrative picture and that is not a hardware production but it may require innovative proprietary hardware.

      It is also CyberIntelAIgentWareFare too, and not at all suited for the folly of fools in search of smarter tools for wars. although such does not deter the fool that is a tool for wars.

  4. Oh Homer

    Endless format upgrade treadmill

    Blu-Ray didn't die, it was stillborn. It was the final straw in the endless format upgrade cycle, in which Hollywood expected people to repurchase their entire film collection every few years.

    Now they're switching focus to the telly instead, with ever-increasing pixel resolutions and gimmicks like 3D, but the result will be the same. Nobody cares, except a handful of privileged idiots with more money than sense.

    (Mines the one with a 700MB CD-R copy of Blade_Runner.mkv in the pocket.)

    1. User McUser

      No so much...

      [Blu-Ray] was the final straw in the endless format upgrade cycle, in which Hollywood expected people to repurchase their entire film collection every few years

      VHS - 1977

      DVD - 1995

      Blu-Ray - 2006

      Seems like a perfectly reasonable upgrade cycle to me. Now if you count the "also-rans" (eg: HD-DVD, the original DIVX, and Betamax) then you might have a point.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Re: No so much...


        DVD plastic started to become reasonably affordable so around 2001. It became reasonable to consider getting into (at least for me) when cracks appeared to get rid of the region blocks on the PC.

        1. P. Lee Silver badge

          Re: No so much...

          >It became reasonable to consider getting into (at least for me) when cracks appeared to get rid of the region blocks on the PC.

          And now you see the driving force behind streaming.

          Its a sad week for me. My last local DVD rental shop is closing. I must be old, I actually like browsing along shelves, looking for something I may have overlooked before. Scrolling through screens of data? Not so much. I find it far less creepy that some corner shop with an old PC running XP is keeping track of my rentals, than some mega corp with an eternal memory and marketing agreements.

          I tried Presto from Telstra - it was rubbish. Browsing was very slow, buffering was very frequent and the selection was very sparse indeed. Nothing is faster than eyes skimming across rows of DVDs. I even like the idea of getting a quite-possibly-rubbish film because it makes up the quota to get a bulk rental discount. Am I the only one who dislikes commercial streaming?

          What's with Apple and Google Rental? $4 (presumably USD) each? I was paying AU$8 for 3 new releases and they didn't jam my internet connection. AU$10 for 10 "weeklies" - handy for picking up the Fresh Prince and Gilligan's Island for my kids. Just-watch has nothing for "Dambusters", The Guns of Navarone? That's $4 from Apple or Google. To quote McEnroe, "You cannot be serious!" This stuff used to be on TV, now we get constant unreality trash that drives me back to gaming. Getting the latest and greatest on Netflix? That's nice, but I quite like the older stuff and they don't make the new stuff fast enough anyway. Netflix’s selection of titles has dropped over 50% since 2012, according to the streaming blog Exstreamist.

          Never underestimate the bandwidth of a lorry-load of tapes or a shop-load of DVDs.

          I'd be happy to see disks replaced by USB keys, but I suspect an A5 cover format is about as small as you can go without losing visual impact or information. I think the film industry has shot itself in the foot. With streaming services reducing their libraries of older content and DVD rental shops gone, there is nothing to promote old content - it will disappear from the public consciousness. Yes they will have their "DRM-enhanced" streaming, but video and its revenue will be even more ephemeral. The physical product has been killed and now the long tail of digital distribution appears to have been cut off.

      2. jelabarre59 Silver badge

        Re: No so much...

        VHS - 1977

        DVD - 1995

        Blu-Ray - 2006

        Seems like a perfectly reasonable upgrade cycle to me.

        The problem was that VHS-to-DVD was a noticeable improvement in quality, portability, convenience and flexibility. Making the move to DVD was a quantifiable improvement. On the other hand, DVD-to-Bluray was far less noticeable, and a lot of studios never bothered to make full use of the format anyway, making a BluRay disk little different from the DVD release anyway. To get the full benefit of DVD video you usually didn't have to buy a new TV, your old set would probably still show an improved image quality anyway. BluRay's higher resolution was only going to be noticeable on high-end TVs anyway, so again less incentive to spend more on it.

        1. AMBxx Silver badge

          Re: No so much...

          Just bought my first DVD that comes with an Ultraviolet streaming/download option. Initial thought - great. Turns out to be SD only rather than the excellent HD I normally get from Amazon.

          Got worse - to stream you need Flash installed on a PC.

          Another stillborn format dreamt up by an industry that failing to see that everything will be streamed in a few years.

    2. Sampler

      Re: Endless format upgrade treadmill

      At what point were you expected to re-buy your dvd collection? I can't think of a single Blu-ray player that didn't also support DVD, so it was hardly an upgrade cycle, just an improvement opportunity for the new films you purchased.

      I may have re-bought some movies I had on DVD in Blu-ray (ironically, Blade Runner being one) but, that was my choice, I wanted the higher quality image and sound, but the platform itself didn't force me, I could've put the old DVD in and it'd've worked just like it did.

      Hell, they didn't even stop making DVD's, so it's not like the forced you across to the new platform.

      What caused Blu-ray still birth was the format with HD-DVD, folk not knowing which to back and I'm sure those who backed the wrong horse felt more than a little burnt and not enough incentive.

      VHS to DVD was a giant leap, no more rewinding, degradation was less of an issue (scratched discs vs degrading/chewed tapes), no more head cleaning, smaller device under the telly and a monumental shift in video and audio quality.

      The change to blu-ray, it looks prettier, if you have all the shiny tech to go with it, the audio you're probably not going to notice if you're using your tv's built in audio.

      If whoever made Blu-ray expected the same shift as DVD got, they didn't really understand their market.

      I personally still prefer it over streaming services, especially with Australian internet, but, I can see why there on the wane and I'm not working in the industry, it's a little surprising this is a shock to Sony..

      1. Oh Homer

        Re: Using Blu-Ray hardware to play DVDs

        In which case why bother buying a Blu-Ray player?

        The whole point of Blu-Ray hardware was to play Blu-Ray media. "Format upgrade" was quite explicitly the whole point of the exercise, just as DVD was to VHS. In the latter case consumers painfully remember how quickly VHS became extinct, and not just the media and hardware but also the repair shops, leaving people to "upgrade or die".

        It was shocking. I recall one repair shop that literally went into liquidation and boarded up while my £1000 state-of-the-art VHS recorder was trapped inside awaiting service. No contact number, forwarding address or anything - I had to hire a solicitor to track down the receivers to get my property back.

        People tend not to forget that sort of thing. This time around they flipped their fingers at the Content® manufacturing industry and told them to naff off. Enough is enough.

    3. GruntyMcPugh

      Re: Endless format upgrade treadmill

      .."and gimmicks like 3D"

      .. although that bubble, for the home market seems to have burst for the time being, Samsung didn't produce any last year afaik, LG reduced their lines last year, and pretty sure I read recently they are giving up, as are Sony this year.

      Immersive, VR experiences will come into play at some point, although I can't see that taking off for films, we need to be directed towards the storyline, there's no point watching if we are concentrating on the extras, and not the main characters.

  5. Jim-234

    Sony has only it's own blind devotion to draconian DRM to blame

    Once upon a time Sony was the king of the latest, greatest & must have electronics.

    Then they got into the music & movie business & totally shafted every one of their future products & formats with huge amounts of DRM restrictions.

    I was interested in some 4K content for my PC, something nice and high bit rate that wouldn't overload my data cap. So some kind of 4K Blu-Ray would be a perfect fit....

    But nope... have to have an intel i7-7xxx CPU, Windows 10, unknown constant software updates, constant phoning home each time I want to play it... Why Bother?

    New Blu-Ray disks no longer seem to want to work with my software or hardware players unless the makers are paying to do more updates, So why buy them, I'm not going to go paying for new versions of the software every 18 months just to watch what I own already.

    Might as well just stream it or get it off the internet without all the hassle of the DRM junk.

    I predict the whole 4K blu-ray thing will go over like mini-disk... DRMed to death before it even got a chance.

    1. Mage Silver badge

      Re: Sony has only it's own blind devotion to draconian DRM to blame

      Also the Sony 4K HD TV has CRAP Google Android and DRM:

      1) Can't even tune without accepting Google "contract"

      2) Primarily set up for Internet Apps. Not everyone actually has Broadband with a Cap for Video or a Netflix sub.

      3) The satellite feature is unmanageable to set favourites

      4) The GUI is garbage and on 43" set the text is unreadable, too small.

      5) The USB HDD must be dedicated, it wants to format and encrypt it

      6) Even FTA content can only be played back on same TV.

      Sony has lost the plot. My old Z1 phone is great. Even the PS4 has a better GUI than their new TVs, but I think their SW has gone downhill since PS2.

      But even going back to Mini-Disk their content arm crippled it with DRM. You could only play back your OWN live recordings via analogue on Net MD. You could only check in and write one copy of any file to the Minidisk via the evil Sony Application.


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Sony has only it's own blind devotion to draconian DRM to blame

        @Mage: in fairness, the points you are complaining about affect all smart TVs I've seen in the last two years* - it's not just a Sony thing.

        > "1) Can't even tune without accepting Google "contract""

        As far as I've seen, pretty-much all smart TVs come with a licence agreement...sigh. Given the prevalance of Android (Sony, Philips, and Samsung's Tizen) ...

        > "2) Primarily set up for Internet Apps. Not everyone actually has Broadband with a Cap for Video or a Netflix sub."

        See 1. Yes, it's annoying. Mine's used as a TV, not a network appliance. I have to wait for it to scan for a network connection (which it won't find due to a lack of a cable being plugged in) before it'll work as a TV. Thanks, Google.

        > "4) The GUI is garbage and on 43" set the text is unreadable, too small."

        It was fine on the one I saw. I ended up with the 49" one, and it's easily readable from 15' away.

        > "5) The USB HDD must be dedicated, it wants to format and encrypt it"

        Same as all of the other current "smart" TVs (well, Samsung, LG and Panasonic, as far as I'm aware) ... something to do with lawyers, I fear.

        > "6) Even FTA content can only be played back on same TV."

        See 5.

        * I bought a new TV 2 years ago when my old one died, and spent far too long looking at the Sony, Samsung, Panasonic and LG ones ...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sony has only it's own blind devotion to draconian DRM to blame

      Why? Because freetards dont want to pay for stuff, and the more they don't pay, less thess money there is to invest in production of content (music movies), and then the quality goes down and less legitimate here's buy, and so the downward spiral continues.

      DRM is there because freetards exist, and without it, there would be no industry.

  6. Wade Burchette Silver badge

    Sorry, but no

    "Sony took an impairment charge on the same business in 2014 as the “demand for physical media was contracting faster than anticipated”."

    Uh, wrong. Demand for physical media is contracting because there is little worth buying. I rent a movie on Netflix DVD, and with only a few rare exceptions I think: "This movie is good, but not good enough to buy" or "This movie is garbage and I regret even seeing it". The quality of the product is inferior. These are movies that I would watch once, either by DVD rental or streaming, and never want to see again. And the product is not getting better.

    I saw the new Star Wars and what did I see in the coming attractions? A bunch of new super hero movies with a big CGI budget and a lot of loud noises. Yawn. The only one that looked halfway decent is the new Logan one, and even then I probably would never see it. The only ones that I would think about going to see is the Dreamworks movie about a baby who thinks he is a CEO but everyone else thinks he is a baby and the Guardians sequel. Oh, and a Cars 3 preview. Cars 2 was such a steaming pile that there is a no chance I will see Cars 3 in the theater.

    Not to mention how some looney tunes are boycotting movies because of how preachy the actors can be.

    Streaming is affecting physical sales, but nothing is affecting movies more than the crappy movies themselves. You cannot replace a good story and plot with CGI, violence, sex, and cursing. But movie studios are doing just that, an evidenced by the 139 comic book movies coming out this summer.

    1. Mage Silver badge

      Re: Sorry, but no


      DVDs and even BluRay are cheap compared to CDs. But I've not bought any for ages.

      But I'm not buying or streaming or watching broadcast. I lost interest in US comics and Disney years ago. LCD stands for Lowest Common Denominator. Crap "reality" styled stuff, or lavish "costume" dramas that are really just soaps and run roughshod over the facts and period dialogue.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Sorry, but no

        "DVDs and even BluRay are cheap compared to CDs."

        I buy DVDs from the charity shops. They have an enormous stock of them for as little as 50p - or even 10p for newspaper freebies. A lot are the newer "watched once" ones - but occasionally you see someone has unloaded a collection containing many classics or niche titles. Currently approaching 1500 DVDs - filling three storage racks. The indexing system needs revamping to avoid buying unnecessary duplicates.

        My neighbour's young son's most prized possession is a portable DVD player. In the summer he and his pals sit round the garden table watching his DVDs. He is already accumulating a large collection. I give him titles he might like from my charity shop forays. It will be few years before he will be allowed free range in my collection though.

        CDs from the charity shops come in at about 25p each.

      2. Oh Homer

        Re: Modern films are crap

        I tend to agree ... mostly.

        The so-called "Top Gun generation" effect (as coined by Mark Harris of GQ) has indeed spawned a remodelled film industry that seems to only produce comic-book adaptations for American millennials.

        But even an old cynic like me has to concede that there are a few diamonds in the rough. I'm quite looking forward to "Gifted", for example, although serious adult drama does seem to be a dying breed in general, especially serious adult drama that's well written.

        I believe that last bit may be the key to why modern films are mostly crap. All the great story writers gave up and went home, after being disenfranchised by a greedy industry that refused to recognise the significance of their contributions, then failed to provide them with a reward commensurate with that contribution, whilst investors and A-list actors walked off with millions.

        The result is vacuous garbage with no real story that relies entirely upon CGI, sex and formulaic reinterpretations of pulp fiction, just as you would expect from a bunch of talentless amateurs.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Re: Sorry, but no

      I spent ten days in hospital and was aware for three days. During those three days, I got zero sleep but did catch up on last two years of movies, or at least the few I might watch. Only film that I'll be willing to buy was "Midnight Special" [2016]. That's damned, effing sad.

      The rest? Soaps with CGI as you said. Yes, high bar for what I'll buy to watch ever again (Kurosawa, Eisenstein,...) but crap sequels and redos aren't going to get my money when streaming meets a throwaway Hollywood production culture.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Re: Sorry, but no

        > I spent ten days in hospital and was aware for three days. During those three days, I got zero sleep

        Is that you Alex? Still loving that Ludwig Van music, are you?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sorry, but no

      Add why is content crap? Freetards have gutted the industry. No company in their right mind would bankroll the next Led Zeppelin, go for the cheap throwaway boy bands, same applies to movies, churn out cheap crap, as half the world are going to pirate it anyway.

      1. Oh Homer

        Re: "Freetards have gutted the industry"

        Only if your definition of "gutted" is a $40 billion industry, rising to $50 billion over the next 4 years.

        And that's just cinema revenue, not home video releases and other revenue streams like merchandising. TV licensing alone probably doubles that figure.

        Excuse me while I wipe a tear from my glass eye, for the poor hundred-billion dollar victims of "freetards".

    4. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Sorry, but no

      I would happily buy plenty of films on DVD - if they were suitably cheap.

      By the time they are actually cheap enough for me to consider buying I will have already seen them on (free to air) TV as it takes ages for DVD prices to become (what I regard as) affordable. With so many entertainment options around, DVD prices are just not viable for a (typically) watch once experience - I'll go for something cheaper or free (e.g. content on iPlayer).

  7. TRT Silver badge


    as a backup medium? Opinion?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Blu-ray...

      Have used it to backup the raw material that has produced my old school memorabilia web site. There's a significant advantage in the whole 25GB on one Blu-ray - rather than trying to split it into nearly 4GB chunks on a set of probably at least 6 DVDs. As an occasional checkpoint the extra cost overhead isn't too bad.

      I also do cyclical back ups to several hard drives just in case the optical media proves short-lived.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Blu-ray...

      I have a hundred (100) blanks, never burnt one yet. My drives can do quad layer (100 GB) but that's pretty useless. Why? I've 14 TB raw which is a bit much to stuff on Blu-ray and from prior experience. would require me to squirrel away at least two copies. Optical disks aren't reliable enough, to my admittedly high standards.

      So, I've got at least two (3-4 actually) living on hard drives, locally with at least one off-site. I've also got a massive cloud storage option and it's getting uploaddes (encrypted by me, locally) which costs me, per year, less than a tenth of adding additional storage capacity. Here, it makes far better financial sense to go local file server, another copy in off-site secure storage and at least a third copy on some cloudy storage (someone else's system).

      I do not see any role for Sony in there at all. It's actually harder to backup to Blu-ray than automated, off-sites to a physical hard drive and second to Amazon. I really only have to remember one thing, taking the drive for off-site, the Amazon only needs me to read a log file entry. That, and checking restores to make sure I can do one when something blows up. That happens often enough that I get regular warm feelings around restores that "just work."

  8. fishman

    So much content

    Right now I've got so much content that I can legally watch that I don't need to buy any disks. Plus, I've got so many DVDs that I bought in the past that I don't need any more clutter in the house.

  9. cjcox

    Don't listen to Sony, they are liars

    The only reason is because Sony purchased the right for Blu-ray to "win" and then they made sure it was completely unusable. Has nothing to do with DVD sales which are being "forced" out. Blu-ray is what is unusable by design. Sony screwed up with BetaMax, they are doing the same with Blu-ray. This is ALL on them and them alone. They forced their way into winning the HD war and they force killed it all at the same time. Sony has nobody to blame but themselves. Btw, the fix could be somewhat easy, but Sony is bound and determined to commit suicide... so be it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Don't listen to Sony, they are liars

      Well, that's as maybe. For Betamax, that was a superior quality format and device, but they failed to make licensing deals with porn studios and left it all to VHS to cleanup. And also, you guys; this is SONY. The one and only company that loves to:

      1) put rootkits on their CDs for no good reason

      2) Memory Stick, AKA Stick It To You Customer

      3) Network Walkman

      4) MiniDisc Walkman

      5) PSP UMD Movies. Even in the bargain bin they are too expensive. Utter crap marketing of a cool format.

      6) PS3 Linux take-back bullshit

      Sure, they made some fine stereo equipment in the 70s and 80s, and the Walkman itself was a game changer. PSX is a great system, and PS2 was pretty nice as well, but they have strayed too far into DRMland and no one wants that crap. No one. PS4 is quite a laugh, and I wouldn't touch PS3 with a ten foot USB cord. Garbage systems with a crap company that hates customers.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Re: Don't listen to Sony, they are liars

        > I wouldn't touch PS3 with a ten foot USB cord.

        There is nothing wrong with a PS3.

        It's a bit retro now, sure.

    2. Wade Burchette Silver badge

      Re: Don't listen to Sony, they are liars

      It was my opinion that HD DVD was better than Blu-Ray at the outset. People called Blu-Ray "Blurry-Ray" in the beginning because encode qualities were so poor. HD DVD could do things from day 1 that Blu-Ray could not do, such as picture-in-picture. That little feature was most interesting in the Bourne trilogy HD DVD's. For instance, you would have a pop-up showing information about an important character. (I didn't know Jason Bourne was trained at Duke University ... ugh.) I remember how Panasonic jumped ship and joined Universal in going to HD DVD. Warner was making movies on both but was leaning toward HD DVD. HD DVD had all the momentum. Then suddenly, Warner Brothers was bought off and HD DVD died. It still took years before Blu-Ray caught up.

  10. maxregister

    Pretty soon (if not already) the key demographic for physical media is people without a reliable internet connection. Which is a lot of people, to be sure. But it's certainly not a growth market. I wouldn't invest in it.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      It will be taken over by chinese shops that sell shrimp packages on the side.

  11. grizewald

    I won't be shedding any tears for Sony.

    Sony did some great things in their earlier days.

    Somewhere along the way, they forgot how they should treat the most important people of all: their customers.

    Hopefully this is the beginning of the end for Sony and an object lesson in humility for all companies who believe that they can dictate to their customers.

  12. martinusher Silver badge

    A poor format that was focused on DRM rather than usability

    I still have a HD-DVD player which we use for watching DVDs. Our BluRay player gets only intermittent use because the delta between a properly upcoded DVD and a BluRay is so slight on even a large 1080p set that its not worth bothering with the rather temperamental BluRay disks. That's right; you may have got used to them but if you look at the overall performance of a BluRay its awful; the video codec can generate artifacts, the reader's prone to errors and its so stuffed full of DRM that even starting the unit is like firing up a coal fired steam engine. The old HD-DVD player works flawlessly, has decent upcoding and if I do drag out an old disk it works at least as well as the BluRay.

    It was never about a decent product, just DRM and what you could get out of the consumer for 'extras'. A sad epitah for what was once a leading edge technology company (one I worked for 30+ years ago -- a very different Sony from the one that's been peddling incompatible formats and clunky products).

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sony, stop making shit formulaic movies that nobody wants to see, the audience is now wise to it.

    What happened to great movies like 12 Angry Men, the original Star Wars, Get Carter etc. You don't need to spend megabucks on crap, give up and coming talent who have something to say a chance and take a risk on something different.

    Whiplash, a damn good movie and made for only $3.3M. Sony have the distribution rights but I bet they didn't put a dime into the production or financing.

    If I want a cheap crap to eat I go to McDonalds, if I want any old shit to fill time I go to bittorrent, if I want art then give me it a the cinema.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My problem?

    Being forced to endure 5 - 15 minutes of utter crap before the bloody film.

    1. GruntyMcPugh

      Re: My problem?

      Hell yes,... try to skip or fast forward, only to get 'This feature has been disabled',... they really don't understand the concept of 'ownership', my disk, my player, I should be able to skip to the start.

      Mind you, the whole DVD / Blu Ray menu system is cart before horse, they start building atmosphere with a menu system reflecting elements of the film,... only to be ripped out of that with the Studio intros, before we go back into the film. They should get the studio banners over with up front, then start the process of immersing the user in the story. Ah, I said story, they'd need some of those too.

  15. Hans 1

    I do not buy Sony, the sooner they die, the better .... and .... if they could give MickeySoft the kiss of death while kicking the bucket, I would be very much obliged.

    I do not buy BluRays, I have a plasma HD TV so I buy DVD's, actually, the only movies I buy are for the young kids, animated films, they watch those often and upscaling animated movies works well enough (I doubt I could tell the difference).

    I have had a BluRay player for 6 years, afaik, it has never seen a BluRay - it is in my ISP-provided set-top-box.

    I have given up on DVD movies for me a decade ago - same for movie theater, too predictable, too boring, waste of time, space (cases ???), and money. I do not even watch streaming or whatever, I don't watch TV, I have a life to live ;-)


    If you disagree, I am fine with that, remember, we are talking "personal taste" here ...


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