Hollywood -- Direct-broadcast satellite companies and cable
operators that are looking to fill extra channel capacity can increase their pay-per-view
movie business significantly if they devote the same kind of bandwidth to the category
that DirecTv Inc. does today.
So said Phil Swann, publisher of Satellite Direct
magazine, an independent Digital Satellite System programming guide and sponsor of a new
Nielsen Media Research study on the PPV habits of DSS owners. The magazine released the
results of the study at last week's Digital Television Summit conducted here by Kagan
In the survey of 750 Satellite Direct readers,
nearly 67 percent said someone in their household had ordered a PPV movie within the past
'DirecTv has clearly hit upon the right price,'
Swann said. Nearly 40 percent of respondents said they would be less likely to order a PPV
movie if the price increased from $2.99 to $3.99 for most movies.
Action-adventure movies were by far the most popular movies
on PPV. But the study also suggested that if a movie does too well theatrically, 'it
could hurt pay-per-view sales,' Swann said. Nearly 60 percent said they would be
unlikely to order a PPV movie if they had already seen it in a theater.
Because it was a consumer survey, the study did not say
whether PPV is a profitable use of digital bandwidth.