How the Pandemic and Streaming Movie Releases Has Led to a Home Entertainment Sales Boom

Tim Baysinger
·1-min read

The COVID-19 pandemic forced “Wonder Woman 1984” to bypass theaters for a Christmas Day streaming release in viewers’ homes, but an increasing number of consumers are trying to bring that theater experience into their living rooms. The pandemic has forced theaters to close and studios to choose either to push their films until next year or reroute them toward streaming. While that has led to an increase in those paying for streaming services — Disney+ rocketed past 86 million subscribers in its first year largely thanks to stay-at-home orders that has kept everyone in front of their TVs far more than usual — they’re also seeking out ways to improve their man (and woman) caves. Computer and consumer electronics ecommerce sales in the U.S. are expected to hit $156.5 billion this year, an increase of 18% from last year and account for the largest share of all online retail (22%), according to eMarketer. A November Dolby survey found that consumers have increased spending on both the quality of their streaming subscriptions (Netflix’s most expensive option allows for streaming in 4K resolution) and the quality of their devices: 64% of respondents stated they had upgraded at least one streaming service to...

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