stories filed under: "hd-dvd"
by Mike Masnick
Mon, Feb 18th 2008 1:12am
A few weeks ago, when we noted that it really looked like HD DVD might finally be done for, we were surprised to see the number of folks in the comments insisting that we were crazy, and HD DVD had a long future ahead of it. Well, it appears that future has been cut short. In the past week, Netflix, Best Buy and Wal-Mart all said they would sell exclusively Blu-ray players and discs going forward, squeezing out whatever last minute hope there was of rescuing HD DVD. Now reports are finally coming out that Toshiba has come to terms with the inevitable and will officially kill off HD DVD in the next week or so. The thing is, this is really three years too late. There were three years where a next generation DVD standard had an open market to dominate. Yet, in those three years, the ability to deliver videos online has grown tremendously, meaning that there's even less of a reason today to upgrade than in the past. No, internet delivery of movie content isn't ideal yet. It's still much easier to use a disc -- but the gap has closed quite a bit and it's only going to get narrower -- until internet delivery systems surpass any kind of disc-based system. It's a classic "innovator's dilemma" where internet delivery mechanisms are getting better at a rate much faster than next generation DVD systems. Those three years of fighting over standards is going to come back and bite everyone who spent all this time fighting over a standard only to miss the larger picture.
by Timothy Lee
Mon, Nov 12th 2007 8:25pm
from the better-late-than-never? dept
For months, Sony and the other members of the Blu-Ray coalition have been declaring themselves the victors in the high-def format wars, with Toshiba and the HD-DVD camp struggling to convince people that they were still in the race. More recently, after bribing Paramount to side with them, the HD-DVD camp has enjoyed a resurgence. And that shift in momentum is apparently having an effect at Sony, as Sony's Howard Stringer is now declaring the comptition a "stalemate" and claiming that it was never that important anyway. Given the overheated rhetoric Sony was using earlier this year, it sure sounds like Sony is now worried they're going to lose, as HD-DVD companies slash prices in the run-up to the Holidays. Stringer laments that his predecessors didn't work harder to come up with a compromise before the two competing formats launched. At this point, it's not clear that there's anything Sony and Toshiba could do to patch things up. There are now hundreds of thousands of HD-DVD and Blu-Ray players in peoples' living rooms, half of which will become useless junk when one format finally prevails. Or maybe they'll all lose, as consumers jump directly to more flexible digital formats that are sold over the Internet instead of on plastic discs.
by Mike Masnick
Wed, Aug 22nd 2007 8:25am
from the oh-that? dept
In what must be the world's most pointless standards battle over next generation DVD technology, apparently all it takes to reignite the tiny fire of interest is $150 million. If you hadn't been paying attention (and, honestly, why would you?), two separate groups have been battling it out over which technology will represent the next generation of DVDs: Blu-ray or HD DVD. Like many standards battles these days, the players believe the pot is so lucrative that they refuse to come up with a single standard -- despite the fact that competing standards basically guarantee that both sides lose. Fewer people are willing to adopt one technology if there's still a half decent chance the other one might prevail. At the same time, fewer people are willing to adopt one technology if half the content they want to view is stuck on the other technology. It's a lose-lose situation. While the HD DVD crowd would deny this, over the last few months, it had finally seemed like Blu-ray was edging ahead (for example, with thieves). However, HD DVD's backers have fought back from oblivion by giving Paramount and Dreamworks $150 million to only release movies on HD DVD, effectively ensuring that this remains a standards battle that no one cares about. The good news is that the longer this battle goes on, the more likely most folks will simply jump to alternatives that don't involve plastic discs.