[opendtv] Re: Lesson of high-def DVD war: It's the ecosystem, stupid

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 15 Jan 2008 12:22:48 -0500

John Golitsis wrote:

> How is Blu-ray the better format, exactly? It has a higher disc
> capacity, but at the expense of higher replication prices. It's
> version 2.0 - which should start becoming available in the 2nd
> half of 2008 - is equivalent to HD DVD 1.0 which began shipping
> in 2006. It's minimum audio requirement is plain old Dolby Digital,
> where HD DVD's is DD+. Oh, and keep in mind that 1.0 players aren't
> upgradable to even 1.1, let alone 2.0 (with the exception of the
> PS3).

The disc capacity is ultimately what matters most, I think. That's why I
said "potential." I expect, for instance, that one of these formats will
soon replace DVD drives in PCs. Clearly, the more dense of the two
formats also makes the most sense in that PC application too.

Years from now, the fact that HD-DVDs might have been cheaper to press
with modified older DVD equipment won't matter to anyone. And that was
the only design advantage of HD-DVD. I see this a bit like the Chinese
going for CD-V initially, instead of DVD, because CD-Vs were cheaper.
Not for long they weren't. They soon became obsolete relics.

> If it weren't for the PS3, Blu-ray would have been absolutely
> still-born. Look at the attach-rate today...there are about 8
> Blu-ray capable players out there for every 1 HD DVD capable
> player, yet the software sales are 2:1.
> The POTENTIAL is clearly on the HD DVD side because if you get
> more players into homes, you'll sell more discs per player.

Or, they could both die.

Back in the days of CED discs vs Laserdisc, obviously Laserdisc was the
better of the two. Yet, CEDs are all that the rental places seemed to
carry, so they actually survived for a few short years. I see this a bit
like more HD-DVDs out there than Blu-ray, in the short term.

In the end, neither format ever reached any sort of critical mass, and
both withered away. CEDs went away faster, though, and deservedly so.
Had rental places carried Laserdics, I think that format would have been
far more successful than CED ever was.

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