I think I might just have to concur with the Hollywood Reporter on this one.
Prediction: Blu-ray blows away HD DVD
2008 is the year Sony’s Howard Stringer and the Blu-ray Disc will slay HD DVD as effectively as Joseph Turok dispenses with dinosaurs. If you’re unfamiliar with that metaphor, you probably don’t have a PlayStation 3.
I think Blu-ray is going to end up claiming the Consumer HD Optical Media crown…
The Hollywood Reporter lists several very good reasons:
Blu-ray movies also outsell HD DVD movies in Europe by a 3-to-1 margin.
Paramount, DreamWorks and DreamWorks Animation recently joined Universal in exclusively embracing HD DVD. But those decisions stemmed from a $150 million “incentive payment” that smacked of desperation.
Warner Bros.’ “300” sales:
Blu-ray: 66%, HD DVD: 34%
Blockbuster, testing both formats, says:
“It’s still about 70%-30% in favor of Blu-ray at our stores that offer both”
But I think, most importantly, when stand-alone Blu-ray players start fulling up shelves, the true might of Sony Electronics may simply shove Toshiba’s HD DVD to the side. This is nothing against the quality of either format. In numerous reviews of comparable disks, there has been little to differentiate one format over the other– aside from “new” and “innovative” interactive features that offer little to the moviegoing experience.
Lastly, I have to think that this is one battle that Sony wants to win more than Toshiba.
After Sony’s failed attempts at MicroMV, Digital8 and, lest we forget, Betamax, I think there’s an issue of Samurai pride that makes this a battle they need to win. Their other recent failures, like the Clie or with the lithium-ion notebook batteries, hurt the bottom line and they need a long-term morale booster for their corporate pride.
Aside from all that, we can just hope there is one successor soon because before long, someone will get movie download rental and sales done right, at the right price, and that will mean the end of having to manufacture and schlep millions upon millions of disks (and packaging) around the world for consumers to just to watch a movie- for the most part- once.