Netflix has 61% of digital movie units, Apple at 4%

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Digital video now makes up one quarter of all home video volume. Netflix's share of digital movie units, downloaded and streamed, reached 61 percent between January 2011 and February 2011. This was followed by Comcast in second place at 8 percent, and a three-way tie for third at 4 percent among DirecTV, Time Warner Cable, and Apple.

The data is for the home video market in the US, collected by The NPD Group. The company surveyed over 10,600 people to determine how Americans are consuming video online via subscription streaming, video-on-demand (Internet and cable), as well as digital movies purchased/rented online.

NPD analysts believe the huge gap is not just due to price but due to overall experience. Apple's store has a much wider selection of up-to-date titles, but Netflix offers an $8 per month streaming option and a better "overall shopping experience," according to respondents.

"Sales of DVDs and Blu-ray Discs still drive most home-video revenue, but VOD and other digital options are now beginning to make inroads with consumers," Russ Crupnick, entertainment industry analyst for NPD, said in a statement. "Overwhelmingly digital movie buyers do not believe physical discs are out of fashion, but their digital transactions were motivated by the immediate access and ease of acquisition provided by streaming and downloading digital video files."

Last year, Netflix saw its biggest year yet, adding 7.7 million subscribers and passing the 20 million subscriber mark. This year, the company is considering an overseas expansion.


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