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Marner takes the helm of the Blu-ray Group Germany

Kai Uwe Marner has become the new chairman of the Blu-ray Group Germany, taking over from Thilo Röhrig who oversaw the Blu-ray format’s development since the Group’s formation in 2007.

“Education and information remain the central tasks of the Blu-ray Group Germany,” says Marner in an interview for the BDA’s website Blu-ray Disc Reporter. “With home entertainment in 3D and growing professional usage of the format using BDXL, further challenges are waiting. The standard’s constant development opens up quite new perspectives – on the market and regarding consumer education.”

Marner reckons there are already 2,000 Blu-ray titles available in Germany. Figures from market monitoring company GfK put the number of discs sold in the first half of the year to about five million. As for hardware, Marner expects sales to increase 170% this year.

“The first sales figures and surveys show a very high consumer interest for 3D Blu-ray,” says Marner. Since March, already 40,000 3D TVs were sold in Germany, according to BITKOM, who indicates that a further 16 million customers are planning to buy a 3D TV. Marner expects “a six-digit sale” by the end of the year. Prices for Blu-ray 3D players start at below €250. The new chairman expects to see a dozen 3D movies on BD in Germany by the end of the year.

Marner does not believe customers are overwhelmed by the arrival of the 3D innovation in the home entertainment. “The success of the 3D theatrical experience has helped to increase the awareness of 3D home entertainment. According to BITKOM research, almost one in three Germans is interested in three-dimensional movie experiences at home. Of course, it is an important task of the Blu-ray Group Germany now to educate and inform the consumers about the advantages and specifics of the technology,” Marner concludes.

Story filed 26.09.10

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