The last decade has been an eventful one for digital media with the massive growth of new online platforms like Spotify and Netflix creating challenges for both existing media companies and consumer electronics manufacturers. What will the new decade hold for digital media? Will we see new businesses emerge? Or will the current market leaders go from strength to strength?
The Digital Entertainment Group monitors the changes and advises its members on how to respond. At DIS 2020 we are going to be welcoming the group’s President and CEO Amy Jo Smith who will talk about what media more widely can learn from the changes that the industry is currently undergoing.
Here she talks about the future for 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Augmented Reality and more and stresses how she thinks that whatever the format content is always king.
What has been your career path so far? How did you land at Digital Entertainment Group?
I began my career in politics working locally in Los Angeles and then in the White House in Washington, DC. My experience lies in consensus building and communications strategy. My time in politics trained me well for my work at DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group.
And what would you say is the core reason for the existence of the Digital Entertainment Group?
DEG exists to serve the needs of digital media industry, with an emphasis on the home entertainment sector.
From the perspective of the movie studios and consumer electronics makers what would you say is the key issue they will face in 2020?
We are experiencing a dramatic shift from traditional viewing habits on linear television viewing into a wide offering of television and filmed entertainment content via direct-to-consumer, subscription and on demand viewing. It will be interesting – and riddled with challenges – as we help consumers navigate this dramatic shift.
Do you think long term there is still going to be space for content on physical discs? How might they evolve?
Physical discs – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray specifically – still offers the best premium viewing experience. That will remain for the foreseeable future.
How do you work with media companies/magazine publishing houses? Is it driven by interest in new formats and platforms?
We work with content owners to identify new formats and platforms and also to look at ways to make the experience improved for consumers.
What lessons can the magazine/media world learn from the pricing structure of online entertainment entities such as Netflix and Spotify?
The various verticals in digital media – magazines, music and film/TV entertainment – can all learn from each other as we move to direct-to-consumer platforms.
Is Augmented Reality/Mixed Reality going to provide consumer electronics makers and contents studios with their next big opportunity?
AR and Mixed Reality have exciting ways to improve consumer experiences. They are also fluid and constantly changing. I am looking forward to seeing how they find their way into entertainment platforms.
Where do you think home entertainment will go in the future? Any innovations we need to be cognisant of?
We see the next 18-24 months as a dramatic change for how consumers get their content and the relationship they have with the content owners and platform providers. One thing we know for certain, content is king and is always in high demand.