Magazine article Information Today

Report Predicts Boom in CD-ROM Market

Magazine article Information Today

Report Predicts Boom in CD-ROM Market

Article excerpt

Report Predicts Boom in CD-ROM Market

Shipments of CD-ROM players, plus the disc-based information and software, which they can read, will pass the $1 billion level by 1991, according to a new 170-page research report. The report, from the market research firm International Resource Development, Inc., pegs the 1988 market at just $83 million for CD-ROM drives and $24 million for the disc-based information and software.

Virtually all of the growth of the CD-ROM market in the next three years is expected to be based upon business, rather than consumer, applications of the technology. According to the report, the new technology is providing both opportunities and threats to the distributors of computerized databases and to microfilm publishers. Distributors of personal computer software are also attracted by the large storage capacity and the permanence of CD-ROM media, as an alternative to (magnetic) floppy disks for software distribution.

The report also states that the consumer market for CD-ROM will start to develop strongly in the early 1990s as a "critical mass" of installed drives is reached. This segment of the market will be dominated by the so-called CD-Interactive (CD-I) version of the technology, which permits digital audio and video in addition to text and data. Consumers will be buying CD-I disc for home entertainment and education, including "how-to" courseware such as do-it-yourself instructional discs for car maintenance or appliance repairs. Game and educational discs will make good use of the audio and graphic capabilities of CD-I to entice users into buying the systems. As information developers gain experience with the medium, and as vendors look for new ways to expand the marketplace, innovative applications will be created that, as yet, have no analogs. …

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