For publishers of books, music, and games, the influence of digital has been felt well beyond media format and distribution. But it has also introduced new vulnerabilities.
Publishing remains a significant constituent of the media industry. Despite the change wrought by technology, book publishing is worth more than $100 billion and growing, gaming is twice its size, and music is valued at around $26 billion. While digital eBooks have proven popular, the physical format still accounts for over half of publishing revenues. Meanwhile, audiobooks are already worth $5 billion and are set to grow substantially.
Whether books, music, or gaming, digitization has changed consumer attitudes, industry dynamics, and even the nature of the content itself in some sectors.
Recreational titles are not alone in finding new formats and frontiers. Academic publishing has moved online, as professional books and other specialist content has been digitized. Of course, music was one of the first sectors to confront digital, with streaming now accounting for more than 65% of revenues. But perhaps most notable has been the growth in gaming, with its penetration of mobile devices and adoption of subscription models.