March 16, 2007 by Arlen Schweiger
Ladies and gents, we have a winner in the high-definition DVD war! OK, actually it’s just one of the sides making proclamations again, with Blu-ray this time going one step further and saying it will even replace regular DVDs as the industry standard very soon.
Three years—that’s when we’ll stop buying DVDs apparently. The Blu-ray Disc Association said on Thursday it aimed to replace the DVD storage format within that time frame.
“Within three years it will just be Blu-ray,” Frank Simonis, the Blu-ray Disc Association’s European chairman, told the audience at the CeBIT technology trade show in Hanover, Germany.
As far as the high-def disc war, Blu-ray may have an edge on HD DVD with the arrival of Sony’s PlayStation 3 late last year as a Blu-ray player, and even the more recent announcement that Sony will be introducing a player this summer at a $599 price that will be highly competitive with Toshiba HD DVD models (at $400 less than Sony’s current player but with virtually the same capabilities).
Sony says it had sold 1.84 million PS3s by the end of December in Japan and North America and that 1 million PS3s are ready for launch next week in Europe.
One thing that appears necessary for Blu-ray to take over as the main disc medium over DVD that is sorely lacking right now, though, is television programming. A list of Blu-ray content can be found on the Blu-ray Disc Association Web site, and it is dominated by movies. We’ll see over the next few years if TV boxed sets of full seasons’ worth of episodes explode in the Blu-ray market as they have in standard DVD format. Otherwise, I don’t think too many people will be shelving their big collections in favor of Blu-ray just yet.
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Arlen writes about home technology installations and product news and reviews for electronichouse.com
and Electronic House magazine.
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