Blu-ray keeps its edge over HD DVD

Last month, we learned that sales of Blu-ray movies had significantly outpaced sales of HD DVD movies in early January. That trend shows no sign of changing. InformationWeek quotes VideoScan numbers that say sales of Blu-ray movies accounted for more than 60% of the high-definition movie market between January 1st and February 18—the latest date for which figures are available. Blu-ray’s market share has oscillated between 63.3% and 69.6% over that time period, and in the week ending February 18, the format’s slice of the market sat at a cool 65%.

InformationWeek says HD DVD had the upper hand between November 19 and December 17, but that Sony’s format started pulling ahead in the week before Christmas—presumably thanks to the company’s PlayStation 3 console, which has built-in Blu-ray support. Sony also has the support of MGM, 20th Century Fox, and Walt Disney Pictures, which all offer high-definition movies exclusively in the Blu-ray format.

Comments closed
    • wierdo
    • 13 years ago
      • Vrock
      • 13 years ago

      I’m not sure what this article is trying to say. The studios haven’t activated the ICT on any discs yet. You can still get full res over component video to any display device that accepts it.

        • wierdo
        • 13 years ago

        I’m just saying… those who invest in this technology are investing in their own golden cage that’s all 😉

      • Snake
      • 13 years ago

      “y[http://www.behardware.com/news/8649/hdcp-protection-is-now-activated-consequences.html<]§ Ball and chain later. <]y Of course. It was _[

    • Kopi
    • 13 years ago

    I’m not jumping into the format war until there’s a clear winner.

    • albundy
    • 13 years ago

    woops! suppose to be a reply.

    • albundy
    • 13 years ago

    hmmm…predictions predictions…

    Could come to the point that cost will determine the movie that you buy, as well as the format, even though future players will be capable of both formats. SO, if a crappy BR movie like Ghost Rider is on the shelf for $40 and Spiderman 3 HD-DVD is on the next shelf at a lower price, where would your money go? Even is a situation that is vice versa, the lower cost always prevail. So the final question is how far will royalties stretch for Sony baloney?

      • somegeek
      • 13 years ago

      Wrong. It’s the titles that will determine the winner. Prices are easily changed, title availability is not.

      In any case, Blu-ray movies and HD-DVD movies are selling at about the same prices ($15-$30).

      The Departed HD-DVD $28
      Casino Royale BR $28

      §[<http://www.hdgamedb.com/amazon/versus.aspx?88301320BFB14AE081D2FBDDF756414C<]§

        • albundy
        • 13 years ago

        Actually, the Departed BR is $5 cheaper than its HD-DVD version. Have you even bothered to check out the prices?

    • Tommyxx516
    • 13 years ago

    More people may own a BR because of the PS3, but most of us are unwilling to spend $30 bucks on a movie.

      • albundy
      • 13 years ago

      or $30 for a blank BD-R

      • Vrock
      • 13 years ago

      I own 19 HD-DVDs and 8 Blu-ray discs, and none of them cost me $30. Most can be had between $19-25. There’s always sales, discounts, etc, especially if you buy online or used.

        • poulpy
        • 13 years ago

        Yeah but to be fair if you’re into sales, discounts, etc you can buy dvds for what $5?

          • Vrock
          • 13 years ago

          You can’t buy new releases or good catalog titles for that. Checkout the $5.50 bin at your local Wal-Mart and tell me how many decent movies there are in there.

          If you compare apples to apples at a place like Amazon.com, you’ll see that HD movies generally command a $5-10 premium over their SD counterparts. And that’s not a terribly high price to pay for what you’re getting.

            • Anomymous Gerbil
            • 13 years ago

            And, that premium will reduce over time.

            • Vrock
            • 13 years ago

            Indeed. The sooner, the better IMO.

    • DaveIsFera
    • 13 years ago

    Ya, but the big questions is whether a lead among early adopters translate into a bigger market share among the mass market?

    • Chrispy_
    • 13 years ago

    /crai

    The *[

      • Krogoth
      • 13 years ago

      Yep in the long-run.

      I wouldn’t be surprised that in after 10 years from now that physical media as we know it is a thing of the past. MPAA/RIAA would so love a PvP scheme.

      • wierdo
      • 13 years ago

      Not really, both are still losing imho.

      §[<http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20070307-blu-ray-hd-dvd-crack-becomes-a-crevice.html<]§ By the time they're winning they'll actually be losing control over the content, recent developments show this to be quite soon.

    • swaaye
    • 13 years ago

    I wonder how much of that Blu-ray thunder is caused by its snazzy name. I bet an awful lot of it.

    Hell, it’s certainly NOT educated consumers. LOL!

      • Decelerate
      • 13 years ago

      Why are you thinking that educated consummers = HD-DVD? I believe that I’m educated enough and do hope that Blu-Ray wins it out.

      Why? More capacity per layer.

      • Mithent
      • 13 years ago

      I always thought that HD-DVD would do better with non-technical people, because it says what it it is: a high-definition DVD. A Blu-Ray? Is that some kind of laser gun?

    • Vrock
    • 13 years ago

    What the HD VOD proponents forget is that the bandwidth for this to be done in any semblance of quality isn’t available. Just look what the cable companies are doing to HD programming because they don’t have enough bandwidth for it.

    Also, a majority of consumers are going to want to own physical media. Period. If you don’t have physical media of some sort it makes it far to easy to go to a pay for play model.

      • Krogoth
      • 13 years ago

      That is the exactly the idea behind VOD. The current setups for SDTV content are merely prototypes for HDTV content once there is enough bandwidth and your average rigs become powerful enough. MPAA can then kill off the middle men and distrubtion costs for physical media. I am speaking in the long-run (3-5 years down the road).

      The popluar of MP3 and other lossy formats proves that majority of the market does not care for lossless format. Laserdisc was techincally the superior format in its heyday, but the market prefer the cheaper, inferior VHS . I expect a repeat of history to whoever is the winner of this round of media formats.

        • BobbinThreadbare
        • 13 years ago

        There were many problems with Laserdisc, and DVDs caught and surpassed VHS. Eventually some high-def media will do the same.

          • Vrock
          • 13 years ago

          Many problems with Laserdisc? Other than some manufacturing issues which contributed to rot, there weren’t any “problems”, per se. Sure, there were downsides: 60 min per side playing time being one, high price of players and discs being another. Despite these problems, Laserdisc was a market force for 20 years and there were *thousands* of movies and television programs released on the format…some of which you still can’t get on DVD to this day.

    • leor
    • 13 years ago

    this was pretty obvious to me from day 1. regardless of what anyone says about the playstation 3, if 1/10th of the PS2 fans upgrade this year blu-ray will have an enormous install base by default.

    the only real chance hd-dvd had was if it was integrated in xbox. now its only chance will probably be to greatly drop the price of drives for computers and try to be the next inexpensive removable storage media.

    • Krogoth
    • 13 years ago

    Blue-Ray and HD-DVD are the next DVD-A/SACDs. Products that only appeal to a niche market. By the time this lame format war resolves itself. The industry will move onto something else, probably high-speed internet real-time streaming (4Mbps+), PvP scheme.

      • Zenith
      • 13 years ago

      I would never go along with that, and most of our TR brothers wouldn’t either.

        • Peldor
        • 13 years ago

        All that matters is when someone wises up and starts shipping HD movies over the net to a simple little box (could be a Tivo++, could be a Xbox360 with a fat harddrive). After that, bluray and HDDVD become just backup options.

        Microsoft ought to be all over this already. Sony could do it, but who knows when they’ll get free of their own distortion field.

          • StashTheVampede
          • 13 years ago

          It’s simple, right? Just deliver a huge file (or set of files), across the internet, to a box, that’s connected to a TV, right?

          Let’s review many sizes of the Bluray/HD-DVD movies: >20Gigs. How fast is your downstream with your net connection? Many people are at 3MB/sec, many are around 5-6 and few are at 10MB/sec (I am, I pay the premium rate). Do you know how long it takes to pull down 20Gigs? You are looking at HOURS to pull down the file(s) for most people in the USA.

          THEN let’s not forgot the output of the TV. Is it using component, HDMI, DVI and is the feed protected with HDCP? What if the TV isn’t HDCP capable (many aren’t) yet the user was *able* to purchase the HD movie and demands to watch it in > 480p? It’s going to be difficult for consumer to return the digital download, especially after the money has already switched hands.

          Finally, it’s the “borrow” setup. I can let my friend borrow my HD-DVD or Bluray player and he can watch the awesome setup. If I get one of these boxes, will it allow me to watch the videos on another TV? DRM now rears it’s potential ugly head — will the video stream be tied to the IP range I downloaded, the TV I’m displaying it on, or have some other form of restriction on who/what/where the output goes to. Each box could have a restriction and each content provider could have their own restriction.

          As much as I’m a huge advocate of downloading HD movies to my home, there are several technical issues making this a pipe dream.

            • Krogoth
            • 13 years ago

            FIOS and inevitible cheaper prices for higher transfers on cable anybody?

            I didn’t say that streaming content was lossess ether. 😉

            • Vrock
            • 13 years ago

            Who wants to watch crummy, overcompressed HD? Kind of defeats the point of HD, doesn’t it?

            Damn Ipod generation has somehow placed convenience over quality, and it makes me ill.

            • Krogoth
            • 13 years ago

            Who spends tons of $$$$ on high-end A/V equipment? Audiophils and Visuaphils a.k.a niche markets.

            If you have the budget for that level of equipment then media cost and players are trivial.

            • Vrock
            • 13 years ago

            You don’t need to spend tons of money to enjoy HD. I’m continually amazed by geeks running the latest and greatest computer hardware in SLI configs, with $500 Dell widescreen LCD monitors, who complain that HD-DVD/Blu-ray is too expensive. Um, hello?

            I’m not saying you’re one of those types, but they are out there.

            • Inkedsphynx
            • 13 years ago

            I agree Vrock. It does not cost that much to have the capability for HD (not including a BRD or HD-DVD player).

            My TV plays HD and you can buy it for 600$ now. While I understand for almost everyone (including me) that’s a pretty hefty chunk of change, it’s not like that’s out of this world expensive. Even a few years ago any LCD was thousands of dollars. Now I can get a pretty decent sized (27 inch) 720p HD-LCD for 600$. Why is that prohibatively expensive? It’s not.

            HD is not a niche product. The market is simply taking a while to catch up to the changes in technology. I expect within a year or two we’ll find that almost all TV content is HD. Even now (almost) every major network offers all their programming in HD.

            • Krogoth
            • 13 years ago

            For 720p it is affordble.

            1080p experience on the other hand is still kinda pricy.

            I am not saying HD content will be niche for a while yet. What I saying is that is very likely that Blue-Ray or HD-DVD will never truly replace DVDs.

            • Inkedsphynx
            • 13 years ago

            §[<http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16889234001<]§ Bam. 1080p. Cheaper than some 720p televisions. HD is not exorbitant in prices like it was not too long ago. All the time prices are dropping.

            • wierdo
            • 13 years ago

            Yeah I’m planning on getting one to hook up to my PC and DVD player.

            Wake me up when Blu-Ray/HD-DVD drives are $50, movies are ten bucks, and the DRMs are bypassed completely – three years for first two, and maybe half a year for last one is my guess – at which point I jump in with a PC HD-DVD/Blu-Ray drive 😉

            • Anomymous Gerbil
            • 13 years ago

            DRM has been bypassed – AnyDVD HD, §[<http://www.slysoft.com/en/anydvdhd.html.<]§

            • wierdo
            • 13 years ago

            Also wanna mention that a same size HDTV that’s 720P is actually $300 cheaper.

            • Inkedsphynx
            • 13 years ago

            Yea, you’re right. I have the 32″ version as my main TV, and I’m going to buy the 37″ 1080p for a monitor eventually 😀

            • wierdo
            • 13 years ago

            Dang that would be crazy 😀

            • Vrock
            • 13 years ago

            The 1080p “experience” is largely a buzzword anyway.

        • blastdoor
        • 13 years ago

        And there are plenty of people who “don’t go along with” regular audio CDs, and insist on buying the pricey stuff. But, as the original poster said, it’s a niche market.

        It’s not like there’s anything wrong with being in a niche market.

        • Dirge
        • 13 years ago

        Considering CDs are still around and DVDs are quite popular, who knows if Blue-Ray/HD DVD will take off. I am happy to play the waiting game.

      • Vrock
      • 13 years ago

      That’s your opinion, of course.

      • fatpipes
      • 13 years ago

      By the time the format war levels out, we’ll be in flying cars with robot butlers. Seriously though, I could really give a crap what format/resolution wins, just settle on something so it can be comoditized and I can buy a burner, a TV and a god damn video player at a stable and LOW price and I can know that I’ll be able to play new releases 2 years down the line.

      Given I’m no audio/videophile and I’m not a high-doller spender on leisure purchases, I’m pretty sure I’ll get the same amount of entertainment value (little) out of the banal and medicore programming and movies that will come out from now until forever. I’m guessing the majority of viewers feel this way too.

      OLED displays are the ultimate, we know this… but we’re still buying into this this 480, 7xx, 1080 bullcrap, feeding their massive coffers and encouraging this behavior of kiting us along with continuously deprecated products.

      And as for these disc formats, what’s the tangible (and non-negligible) difference aside from who’s making money off me?

      This whole thing disgusts me too much to apply rational thought for my own education, please inform me, those of you who have done the research.

    • flip-mode
    • 13 years ago

    Meanwhile, now that MS has released an OS that can only be installed from a DVD, will video games on a 5-disc set finally be a thing of the past? That really pisses me off. And then they go and charge more for the single disc DVD (sometimes).

      • Shintai
      • 13 years ago

      I think 5-7CDs etc is still only in the US. In europe we just get 1-2 DVDs and been doing so for years.

      • Krogoth
      • 13 years ago

      Actually, newly released games that are large enough start to ship in DVDs in the states. For example Surpeme Commander is a DVD-only release in the states.

      I suspect Vista is the reason that publishers in the states are starting to release stuff on DVDs. It certainly took long enough. They could of them done it like two years ago.

    • Inkedsphynx
    • 13 years ago

    I really hope Blu-ray doesn’t win out over HD-DVD. It would make me very sad, given the track record Sony has of poor quality devices and sub-par customer relations.

    I will say though, if one of the two is going to triumph, I hope it happens sooner than later. I’d still rather have Blu-ray over nothing, even if I’d prefer HD-DVD. But I refuse to invest in either until there is only 1 primary format, or all players are compatible with all formats.

    • PRIME1
    • 13 years ago

    §[<http://www.eproductwars.com/dvd/<]§ Blu-ray is now in total domination of the market.

      • droopy1592
      • 13 years ago

      OMG there so much domination there! There’s no chance in hell for HD-DVD!

    • Vrock
    • 13 years ago

    Minor quibble: MGM really doesn’t exist as its own home home video entity anymore (Sony Pictures distributes all of their post-1986 movies, while WB owns the pre-1986 properties and associated distribution rights), so I don’t think it’s accurate to say they are BRD exclusive. So really the three BRD exclusives are Sony, Disney, and Fox.

    To further complicate things, there’s rumors of an “executive upheaval” in Universal Studios over high-def formats. If Universal goes neutral, then stick a fork in HD-DVD, it’s done.

      • insulin_junkie72
      • 13 years ago

      y[< Sony Pictures distributes all of their post-1986 movies <]y MGM's distribution deal with Sony didn't actually last very long; they jumped to Fox and been distributed by them since last fall.

        • Vrock
        • 13 years ago

        You are correct, I thought it was the reverse. Thanks.

    • somegeek
    • 13 years ago

    Universal, the only exclusive studio backing HD-DVD, isn’t helping by pissing Microsoft off. You can tell there is bad blood between the companies after Universal demanded a cut of each Zune sale. After that, Bill Gates recommended that people should rip cds to their computers.

    • Krogoth
    • 13 years ago

    While, DVDs are still #1 in terms of sales.

      • Vrock
      • 13 years ago

      Well sure, because the installed hardware base is exponentially higher.

        • Mithent
        • 13 years ago

        And both HD-DVD and Blu-Ray players are prohibitively expensive or inconvenient for most people.

          • Vrock
          • 13 years ago

          HD-DVD players can be had for as little as $400, and Blu-ray for $500. The average American has appliances in his/her home that cost more than that.

            • NeXus 6
            • 13 years ago

            While fairly inexpensive, they still aren’t at a good price point for the masses. I wouldn’t invest in a HD DVD or Blu-ray player right now until a standard format is set in stone. If they were selling under $200 it wouldn’t be so bad.

            I’ve seen that LG makes a hybrid HD DVD/Blu-ray player for around $1500. This would be great if the price was much lower.

      • PRIME1
      • 13 years ago

      It took years for DVD to overtake VHS, especially in the rental biz.

    • ioport
    • 13 years ago

    So what are the PC builders proponents of the HD DVD format waiting for, to install one of these in each PC, so that the price can drop right away to sub $100 levels?

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This