Despite Winning The HD Format War, Blu-Ray Sales Dropped

from the whoops dept

We've been pretty harsh on the warring camps over the next generation DVD standard, pointing out, frankly, that most people just didn't care, and the longer the two sides battled, the worse the problem would get. However, even given that I wouldn't have expected the latest news that Blu-ray sales have plummeted from January to February, following its eventual win in the standards battle. Research group NPD chalks up the sales drop to the high prices of Blu-ray DVD players... but that doesn't make any sense. The players were already expensive -- so you'd at least expect sales to remain constant, even if selling prices may have bumped up a bit without the HD DVD competition.

My guess is that a few different things may have impacted the decline in sales. First, there's the seasonal aspect of it (and February is a short month). But, perhaps even more important is that the whole standards battle itself turned users off from any form of next generation DVDs. Those who were HD DVD early adopters are pissed off that they bet on the wrong horse, and those who didn't follow the space closely just know that some folks got screwed -- and don't want to take the chance. One other factor may be the widespread stories warning people not to buy Blu-ray, because the player profile is getting updated, and many older players are not upgradeable. Either way, the backers of Blu-ray can't be all that thrilled that the end of the standards battle didn't lead to a jump in sales. Perhaps they should have spent a bit more time coming up with reasons for consumers to buy rather than wasting all that time fighting with HD DVD.

Filed Under: blu-ray, hd dvd, sales, standards battles

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  1. identicon
    thecaptain, 2 May 2008 @ 7:04am

    blueray slump

    That's not true at all. If the quality is different, it's different. On my 1080p TV, with good cables, you can absolutely see a difference. We tested the theory by having friends and relatives over and 100% of the time they could tell whether the movie was 1080p or DVD. It's a matter of more than double the resolution... it's a big difference.

    I agree with you, the quality IS different. People arguing about the quality are missing the point.

    I consider myself typical to most right now. I'd love to upgrade to HD. The flatscreen prices have finally dropped enough for me to seriously look into it.

    Verdict? Hell no.

    For me to enjoy the "quality difference" I have to get a new TV (because on my albeit good quality CRT TV it won't make any difference), I have to get a new set-top box (that's another $500) and I have to get all sorts of cables and doodads (lets say another 100$). A blueray player (might as well buy a PS3) and get movies (29.99 to 49.99 in Canada these days). That's a HUGE investment all of a sudden.

    Forget about the stupid DRM issues which are important to ME but not to everyone, so I didn't go into them.

    Or, I can just enjoy what I have now, which is by no means bad and like someone above said, I can watch them in any tv in my house, rip them to my iPod if I want or whatever.

    There's ZERO advantage for me to spend that much to switch. The "higher quality image" isn't worth emptying my bank account and shackling myself to one TV with draconian DRM.

    I really hope some people from Sony or whatever are watching forums like these and get a clue...although I realize that its extremely unlikely.

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