Sorry but this has been bothering me for sometime and I need to get it off my chest. Much like the title why is blu-ray adoption so poor in the US. Its been 7yrs now since the format came out and 6yrs since it won the standard. Set top boxes are cheap now virtually costing the same amount as dvd players did in 2005 (roughly $80-$150). Now I know Funi is the biggest backer of blu-ray for anime but its still what 2-4 out of 10 new anime that comes out is blu-ray. And the other companies 0-2 out of 15.
Its annoying as heck to know that its 2013 and all anime in japan gets a blu-ray release and air in HD and we in the west gets the short stick. A heck of a lot of people now-a-days own a HD TV and watching anime on dvd on a 32" HD Tv looks horrible. I personally hate buying dvds i avoid them. I only try to buy blu-rays. All my movies I own are blu-ray I stopped buying dvd of movies back in 2007. And because I go to numerous forums in the anime community many anime fans refuse anything less then HD standard.
I know companies are worried about sales but continuing a poor ratio between the two is only hurting you guys. It feels like you want to make streaming the more likely option but why stream when you can go download it through a fansub and own it? I'm for supporting and Funi is my favorite cause you really cater to the sub group (leaving in honorific white subs instead of that god aweful yellow and sometimes the original credits).
I only show my support to anime brought over in Blu-ray format. And with the declining sales of anime in the US with out being in your or another company's accounting department it looks plain as day that many anime fans are doing the same. Maybe its the reverse importing (though I don't really believe thats the case cause rightstuf, ebay and amazon don't really ship overseas. very few people do and when they do its expensive and plus the time delay between when we get the anime release vs when it came out in japan is at least a year to two years behind on 80% of the anime just doesn't really seem likely).
So buying a set top box is cheap and considering the playstation 3 crowd even if only 5-20% (thats 1.29 million - 5.16million) of ps3 owners watch anime thats still is a huge amount of potential customers and its been quite a long time since the format was release why does it feel like its still 2006 with anime on blu-ray in america?
You're (as in the whole anime industry in the US) losing customers by releasing mostly dvd versions and your hurting your blu-ray sales of anime that was earlier released on dvd because it takes a true collector to rebuy the anime again and now own two copies of that anime. I mean streaming is great to try before you buy but the customer isn't really getting what he/she expected since they streamed an HD quality and now the spent 40-60 on the dvd and watch it on their hd tv to realize it looks pixilated, you can see the compression and it only looks worse on the bigger HD tvs. So now they don't buy the dvd version your sales hurt and now you can't afford to release a blu-ray version or sales are horrible and you get the misconception that they didn't like the anime so why release the blu-ray version when sales said it was bad on dvd. and the few that were good on dvd you decide to release blu-ray version only to realise it didn't sell well so you think maybe not enough people own blu-ray players when it could just be most people aren't willing to buy the samething twice cause the economy is bad. when you could have just sold it as blu-ray and the people who support anime companies will be more willing to buy it cause it looks better then what they streamed and now they may have a choice of english or japanese instead of one or the other.
Anime did so well on dvd cause it was an extremely quick adaption introduced english and japanese audio tracks, subtitles tracks, better video and audio quality more episodes per disc then tape and better packaging and the industry quickly killed vhs within a year or so. the only thing different today is the poor adoption leading to declining sales. sorry for mentioning this again but fansub only release hd versions of the stuff because they know anime fans do not care for SD versions. And the industry is still mainly only supporting the SD stadnard to own. I'd rather spend 50-70 on the HD version of the anime. I love quality video. From the getgo I know that blu-ray was going to win the standard because for the most people people care about quality thats why HD tvs quickly replaced SD tvs. Its virtually impossible to buy an SD tv from a retailer and yet the anime industry thinks sd anime looks good on an hd tv. upscaling can only do so much through the set top boxes and ps3 but they still look horrible.
It pains me to see brand new anime that aired in japan in HD got an Blu-ray release as well and here we're stuck with dvds. In japan all anime is released on blu-ray some have dvd counter parts. I own a little over 100 anime series and about 90 of them are dvd I bought that back in 2005-2008 thats when I still owned a sdtv and I was buying anime like crazy. I love anime I love to support anime. But since 2009 I barely bought any why cause I own a ps3 I own an HD tv (my hd tv at the time i bought it was $425 32in hd tv are way cheaper now) and ithought it was a joke that anime was still largely released on dvd (now i think its pitiful and i can't understand why most of the anime i like to watch is dvd based). Since 2009 I have only bought blu-ray but most of the blu-rays that get released are the ones i have no interest in watching. And i get the feeling most anime fans are in the same boat as me. the dvd version of this anime cost way too much 40-60 for a dvd and for 13 episodes, thats too expensive 40-70 for a blu-ray for 13-26 episodes thats a deal.
I tihnk the fall/decline of anime in the west is not due to customers but due to the industry itself because its only became like this shortly after blu-ray won the standard. and the industry failed big time to adapt. its not from pirating its not from reverse importing. those are tiny blips on the radar cause fansubing has been around far longer then the industry itself. and from 1999-2007 nearly ten years of anime growing cause of dvd format catering to both sides the industry was able to bring them over easier. and now a new revolution has happened HD. and the format war caused major confusion allowing for streaming to come out ahead and you guys completely cut off the people who own anime buy releasing majority on dvd.
So my question is why is the industry in 2013 treating anime customers like its back in 2005? not a lot of people own sd stuff. we stream HD movies, we stream HD anime, we buy HD movies we watch shows that air in HD, we play games in HD, our cellphones are HD and yet our anime that we buy are still SD. nobody wants SD. SD is something we tolerate now-a-days. we get SD for cheap and yet SD anime is expensive while its HD equivalent is priced right. makes no sense and I can only see that as the reason why legal anime is dying.
Sorry for the wall of rant. I appreciate that you're trying and that you back it the most out of the rest but there is still major improvement that needs to be made. I hate buying digital. phyiscal copy for shows, movies should be the ownly exceptable form of ownership. streaming is fine for a try before you buy kinda thing. and plus a digital copy/streaming will never look as good as a blu-ray. why? simple. compression is the key 25-50gb per disc depending, 50gb disc holding 13 eps gives 3.85 gb per episode (or 20 eps for 2.5gb per ep) vs the 300mb streaming/digital copy theres no comparison. the blu-ray version will win everytime. And 1080p (blu-ray) vs 480p (dvd) again no contest.
Again sorry for the rant just makes no sense of why the anime industry in the west is shooting itself in the foot.