Blu-ray Wins: HD DVD is Dead

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Up until recently, there was a huge high-definition format war in relation to DVDs. We had HD DVD vs. Blu-ray. Now… HD DVD has gone the way of the Dodo Bird. Nick is a community member who wrote in:

Yeah I know… the stupid debate about HD (physical formats)… but since it’s in the news, I’d like to get your comments about Blu-ray declared winner of this stupid battle against HD DVD (Samsung will focus on Blu-ray hardware, Panasonic will release Blu-ray reader/writer in Japan in February, Blockbuster and Wal-mart will go exclusive BD, etc). Who’s the real winner? How will Microsoft react?

I know online HD content is an option for those who want to avoid that conflict of physical formats (BD/HD DVD), but I still believe that the majority of average users will go for the physical format (discs). Companies like Seagate must be really happy to see the increase of downloadable HD content everywhere because users have to store content somewhere (HDD). But I still think that people will prefer having a physical disc instead of having something stored on their HDD (not to mention going online, downloading the contents, and waiting hours to get it). I think the real winner is probably the consumer with less confusion and more products (players / writers) available. But still, I guess we’ll have to wait 4-5 years before we see HD players/writers in most average users’ homes. Why? HD is really expensive and DVD is still doing pretty well (you can buy a DVD player for $99 and the quality of image and sound is still pretty good).

Well, it’s not a format war anymore. HD DVD is dead, and Blu-ray is the winner. I thought HD DVD was going to have it with the Xbox 360 external drive. I thought Sony was shooting itself in the foot by incorporating the Blu-ray player inside the PS3. I was wrong! Thank goodness I only have a couple of HD DVDs. Now we have to wait for Blu-rays to be everywhere on the market now.

The bottom line is that I was rooting for HD DVD. However, I’m glad the format war is over. Now there’s no confusion, and consumers won’t be hurt any further in trying to choose… and possibly choosing a loser. It’s now Blu-ray all the way… at least until the next format war arrives.

I do believe, however, that physical media isn’t going to be around for too much longer. I’ve already taken to storing my music in the Cloud… online. I’ve got a subscription to Rhapsody to download my music from online. I don’t have any mp3s stored on my hard drive. I have so many computers these days, I can’t keep up with all the content I have as it is. My music is there online if I need it. Why would I download all of that and put it onto a computer, only to move it to another when needed? It’s much easier for me to just have access to it online, no matter where I am or what machine I use.

Streaming media is coming. Downloadable media is coming. I guess I’m now going to be looking for an external USB or FireWire drive that is Blu-ray and DVD-X compatible. What’s the point in waiting? Format wars are over, in case you didn’t know. If you do happen to have HD DVD stuff, keep it. The drives will still work… there just won’t be anything new manufactured with that format.


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