Despite this fundamental change in how we enjoy what's on offer, however, we can tend to take things for granted. Make no mistake, we live in the future, and if we take a step back to see the path travelled, we can better appreciate what we have today.

Movies and TV

Back in the year 2000, viewers had no choice but to watch movies and TV through either broadcast or recorded methods. Operating by strict timetables and clucky physical media, this environment was not one that many would want to go back to. At the time in the UK, the most popular paid video service was Sky, which boasted 3.6 million subscribers. Twenty years later, and more than 32 million in the UK rely on video-on-demand streaming services, a near ten-fold increase. This equates to nearly half the UK population, as explains.

Interactive Entertainment

Interactive entertainment always had a home in the digital sphere, but the sheer size at which it exists today is far beyond what earlier efforts could have predicted. According to, the video gaming market in 2000 alone was worth $36.17 billion worldwide. By 2020, this value had increased to more than $159 billion.

Aided by growing markets in consoles, PCs, and mobile devices, the upward trajectory has shown no signs of slowing. Graphics got better, games got bigger, connectivity improved, and the market responded to the developments strongly. Just 20 years ago, few would have thought that mainstream eSports gaming was possible, yet today it thrives.

The other side of this interactive coin comes from the world of online casinos. Back in 2000, this market was so niche that no reliable numbers on its value are available. Perhaps not surprising, given these only started in 1996. In 2020, the online casino market was valued at around $66.7 billion.

Far from just increasing in size, online casino today like those named and linked to at are aided by immense online infrastructure. With comparison websites, bonuses like free spins and deposit matches, and the ability to run easily on a whole host of devices, these casinos have come a long way. In addition, just like their video gaming counterparts, online casino's upward trajectory has been constant.


Despite such a strong historical legacy, it’s only natural that newspapers would eventually go the way of the dodo. Wasteful and slow, online avenues proved superior in all but tactile appeal. In the UK, this was best illustrated when The Independent went online only in 2016. Long before this, other papers like the London Evening Standard and Daily Mail underwent similar cuts and downsizing. A report archived at from 2008 predicted one in ten print publications would shut down in 2009, and this prediction would hold far beyond that year alone.

The last twenty years of digital development have evolved our entertainment horizons perhaps more than any other era in human history. From relying on radio waves and physical media, the online landscape has brought us on-demand entertainment and news like never before. So, next time you have to wait for a show to buffer or a page to load, maybe consider how the worst we have today is better than we best we had growing up.