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Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Sony: Blu-ray Will 'Overwhelm' HD DVD

Sony: Blu-ray Will 'Overwhelm' HD DVD

"The delay of the first HD DVD players into next year combined with the inclusion of Blu-ray in the upcoming PlayStation 3 will be the knock-out punch to the HD DVD camp, believes Benjamin Feingold, president of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Feingold says there will be a "big bang" when Sony launches the PS3.

For months there had been much talk of a possible compromise between the Sony-led Blu-ray camp and the Toshiba-led HD DVD group, but neither side could come to an agreement. In late August, Toshiba admitted that talks to unify next-gen DVD formats had ceased. "It is regrettable but unavoidable that two formats will remain (on the market)," a Toshiba official told the Kyodo News Agency.

The 'big bang'
Shortly thereafter, the news spread that Toshiba was pushing back its HD DVD launch into 2006—the Japanese firm had planned to introduce the first HD DVD players during the fourth quarter of this year. The delay was all that skeptics needed in order to pronounce HD DVD dead, and it apparently was the perfect ammo for Sony to use against the rival format.

Speaking to, Benjamin Feingold, president of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE), made the prediction that within a year HD DVD would have no choice but to surrender, largely thanks to the inclusion of Blu-ray players in every PlayStation 3.

"It's clear to me that a year from now everyone will be putting out Blu-ray, whether they've announced or not, because once there are a few million playback devices it's a revenue stream they cannot and will not ignore,"
- Benjamin Feingold, president of SPHE

"I think in 12 months it's all going to be clear: the combination of Blu-ray and PlayStation 3 machines is going to overwhelm any HD DVD presence and all studios will have to support Blu-ray," said Feingold.

He continued, "There's going to be a big bang when PS3 launches. The convergence aspect is the killer application. If HD DVD does launch it will be a small format, and the real question is do studios want to build an infrastructure to support that and at the same time risk confusing consumers?"" [more]

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