Are Home Cinemas Becoming the ‘New Normal’?

November 2, 2020

There are always winners in a crisis – and if the latest figures are anything to go by, it’s the home cinema industry. According to findings from big brands such as Bose, LG, Samsung and Sony, the home cinema market is set to skyrocket by 2026.

At SONA, we’ve been extolling the benefits of home cinemas and media rooms since we began, back in 2012. But it’s heartening to see that home cinemas may be becoming more accessible to a wider range of users. Meanwhile, it’s also encouraging to see the entertainment industry weathering the storm of COVID-19, despite creative restrictions.

So, with more competition than ever, and the ongoing pandemic challenge, what’s the secret behind home cinema success?

Staying home

Indeed, one person’s crisis is another person’s good fortune. For some industries, the coronavirus has been serendipitous. As lockdown restrictions continue to grip the nation, we’re looking for more ways to entertain ourselves indoors.

In addition, homeowners have spent £55 billion on home renovations since lockdown. In a bid to improve our home environment, we’re willing to pay for technology we may not have previously considered – such as home cinemas.


With large screen TVs and speaker systems dropping in price by the day, recreating the home cinema experience at home is getting easier on the wallet. Of course, a ‘budget’ version is not likely to be an exact replica, with immersive sound and hidden speakers, but many people are now converting spaces to ‘media rooms’.

These allow us to make a space more versatile, for example, watching both loud action movies and using them in a more social setting, like watching sports games. Interior designers are getting more creative with their hidden panels, mirrors and adjustable projectors to ensure a room can transform easily – without breaking the bank.

Better streaming content

It’s no secret that online streaming saw an astronomical surge during lockdown. Streaming platform Netflix saw an uptake of 10 million new users in one quarter alone. This has put more pressure on creators to produce better content specifically for streaming sites, and we’re already seeing many capitalising on this.

The long-awaited Borat sequel, for example, was delivered exclusively on Amazon Prime, rather than relying on a traditional cinema release. Coupled with another nationwide closure of cinemas, this proved a fruitful marketing strategy for creator Sacha Baron Cohen. The movie drew in “tens of millions” of viewers during its opening weekend, according to Variety.

More live events

In the absence of concerts and festivals, entertainers are also turning to livestreams, and the home cinema is the perfect venue to recreate those vibes. For example, McDonald’s introduced ‘I’m Lovin it Live’ over the last weekend of October, available to view on its app. With smartphones now offering a casting function to television sets, there’s no reason why viewers can’t see it on the big screen.

Likewise, news stories are even more explosive on a home set. The US election debates pulled in an incredible 73 million viewers worldwide. That’s just one of many ongoing political dramas, including updates from our own leaders over the handling of the pandemic. As we continue to navigate through some pretty unstable times, this content becomes a melodrama of its own – perfect for big screen viewing.

Is it time to upgrade your media room?

As the nights draw in, there’s even more incentive to stay inside and watch the rest of 2020 unfold. At SONA, we’re full of ideas on how to make the most of both small and large spaces, whether it’s a media room or full home cinema project. You can even check out our award-winning case studies to see them in action.

For enquiries about home cinema projects, contact the SONA team today.