Home Theater Boom

Home Theater Boom

"The casual screen will cause a revolution in the home theater market." In terms of the home theater debate as seen from the standpoint of displays, which was proposed in the previous issue, the casual screen is certainly an eye-catching presence. The feature attracted a tremendous response, and I have even received requests to give speeches and so on from top executives in the industry.

I had been thinking about the reasons why a home theater boom was not occurring. From June we raised our Hometheater phile magazine in status from a quarterly to a bimonthly publication. Our decision to do so stemmed from requests that we received from bookstores and agents. Usually, in the case of a magazine, separate issues and extra issues are published as offspring of the existing publication, which is upgraded through these sales.

Hometheater phile was first published in the fall of 2000 as an extra of the AV REVIEW magazine. In 2001 it was published four times as an extra issue. To be honest, sales went much better than expected. Accordingly, in September 2001, in an unprecedented event for bookstores and agents, Hometheater phile was raised in status to a quarterly publication, thus becoming Japan's only regular home theater magazine. And now it has been raised in status again to a bimonthly publication (issued in February, April, June, August, October, and December). This exceptional speed also is attracting a lot of attention.

That's right. The magazine that we publish is creating a boom in the home theater market. I predict that the magazine's circulation (at present 30,000 copies), centered on core readers, is going to increase several times. Since the magazine has only been issued as a regular publication for less than two years, circulation today is still in the development stage. I hope to bring about the increase by, among other things, running an aggressive advertising campaign in national newspapers and Phile web.

I firmly believe that the feature on the home theater debate as seen from displays is going to be a factor in creating a real home theater boom in the industry as a whole. In the case of home theater, businesses have been divergent in their ways of thinking and acting. Because they had various conceptions about what home theater should be like and a variety of product plans, they became far removed from reality, so the market has not borne fruit. For some makers, the plans worked and they tasted success, but the industry as a whole has been a long way from painting a picture of rapid growth.

Through the classification of screens into casual or set (installer participation), the home theater environment comes into view. The division into casual screens and set screens, in addition to CRTs, LCDs, and PDPs, enables separate marketing in these two genres. As a result, it becomes clear what should be done in terms of attaching added value and offering advice by type of room, age, and lifestyle, and marketing can be developed accordingly.

In particular, the casual screen genre covers young adults and the young generation. Turning these age groups into a core is the biggest point in creating a home theater boom. This is what is meant by studying the home theater debate from the standpoint of displays. It will not be possible to create a home theater boom without the steady promotion of this factor.

Naturally, we intend to contribute to stirring up a real home theater boom by carrying related home theater publicity in our company's publications?Hometheater phile, Eigakan no aru ie (Home with a Movie Theater), and Phile web.