Digital downloads may well be the most convenient thing since Domino’s Pizza but don’t think for a second that the physical medium is down for the count just yet — at least that’s the message from Dr. Jens Uwe Intat, Electronic Arts’ European VP and General Manager. Speaking to gamesindustry.biz, Dr. Intat said that he thinks the physical distribution of software still has a major role to play and will continue to do so for many years to come.
“On the question of where packaged goods will go – there are two factions, but I’m clearly in the camp that doesn’t think it’s going to go away before I retire,” he said. “The reason why I’m so convinced is that software developers eat up storage space so much quicker than telcos can build distribution. You can see leaps in terms of digital distribution capacity, but if you see how those guys increase the size of games… it’s just unbelievable.”
Intat is right, however it may be a little presumptious to call the future of the medium just yet. Twenty years is a long time by anyone’s measure, but it is an even longer time in technology-years. How many people had even heard the word ‘internet’ twenty years ago, let alone ‘broadband’? Then again, who had heard of ‘high definition’ or ‘Blu-ray’ either? Intat is very careful not to prophesise on what shape the future of physical media might take, which at this point is probably a very smart move to make.