Print 43 comment(s) - last by Mitch101.. on Nov 19 at 11:43 AM

My local Wal-Mart had only 20 of the Toshiba HD-A2 HD DVD player for $98 and still had no one waiting to buy

The war is raging between HD DVD and Blu-ray formats. HD DVD claimed the biggest sales in October with the release of Transformers as an Exclusive HD DVD title. Yet Blu-ray claimed the top HD format sales numbers for the first 9 months of the year and Blu-ray has some influential movie makers like Michael Bay betting it will be the format that wins.

DailyTech reported yesterday that Wal-Mart was running a secret sale and one of the items in the sale would be the Toshiba HD-A2 HD DVD player for a mere $98.87. I recall going to my local Wal-Mart to get my Wii last year when they announced a shipment was coming in.

Wal-Mart had barriers set up outside and seats inside to keep the geek throngs from messing up the normal folks’ day that just needed some milk. I showed up at Wal-Mart this morning expecting to see lines of black-Friday proportions out front behind barriers and lines of people fighting to get their hands on the HD DVD players.

There were exactly no people waiting to buy the $98 HD DVD player. Several Wal-Mart employees were leaning on the display of 20 HD-A2 DVD players, all they had for the secret sale. While I stood there waiting for the Wal-Mart employees to get off the display so I could grab one I realized one of the guys seemed to be talking another shopper standing there into buying one of the players, repeatedly mentioning how good a deal it was.

The fact that people weren’t lined up in droves was frankly surprising to me. I wondered what did that mean. Does it mean that the Wal-Mart secret sale was just too secret? On the other hand, does it mean that even at under $100 people still aren’t willing to jump on the HD DVD bandwagon.

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By Bioniccrackmonk on 11/2/2007 5:00:11 PM , Rating: 4
On the other hand, does it mean that even at under $100 people still aren’t willing to jump on the HD DVD bandwagon.

Or people are just waiting until there is a declared winner or one camp really close to winning. A $100 bucks is still a decent amount of money to throw away if that camp doesnt end up winning.

RE: Or
By Master Kenobi on 11/2/2007 5:11:54 PM , Rating: 2
Shit was sold out in 5 minutes after 8 near me. I was lucky to get one =/

RE: Or
By mikecel79 on 11/2/2007 5:24:49 PM , Rating: 2
Sold out by 8:30 at my local Walmart. I got the 2nd to last one.

RE: Or
By wrekd on 11/3/2007 11:58:56 AM , Rating: 2
I guess I was the only one who cared in little old Waynseboro, PA. I was the one and only person who wanted one at 8am. And they had at least 20+ units in a big plastic wrapped case just sitting in the isle.

On a side note the 2nd disc I watched, Fearless with Jet Li, stopped 50% thru and would not play. All indications say update the firmware. I'm doing that now by burned ISO. 40 minutes and counting...

RE: Or
By Spuke on 11/5/2007 12:34:37 PM , Rating: 2
I guess I was the only one who cared in little old Waynseboro, PA.
You're from Waynesboro, PA??!!! So am I!!!! LOL!!!

RE: Or
By therealnickdanger on 11/3/2007 3:39:15 PM , Rating: 2
Nine of my closest Wal-Marts AND five Best Buys closest to me were ALL sold out of the HD-A2 by noon yesterday. The Wal-Marts were also out of the 50" plasma and laptop.

RE: Or
By Mitch101 on 11/19/2007 11:43:01 AM , Rating: 2
3 WalMarts here in Charlotte sold out of them.

RE: Or
By Bloodlust on 11/2/2007 5:30:57 PM , Rating: 2
I believe this is the case as I am one of those people. Also, since it is a "secret sale", I believe most of the buyers are tech savvy people in the know.

I really have no desire to jump to one side right now, as many may recall the VHS/Beta war. I'd be more interested in a dual format player.

RE: Or
By KristopherKubicki on 11/2/2007 5:39:52 PM , Rating: 2
We only have one Wal-mart in Chicago, and those players were gone before 9. :(

RE: Or
By Bryf50 on 11/2/2007 5:48:09 PM , Rating: 1
My bullshit walmart sold them at 7 so when i got there at 8 like the ad said i had no chance.

RE: Or
By KristopherKubicki on 11/2/2007 5:51:38 PM , Rating: 2
I think if you're a Sam's Club business member, you could get in early and snag a few that way.

RE: Or
By theapparition on 11/4/2007 5:13:32 PM , Rating: 2
If you look at the ad, it said that the order over the web pickup is 8:00.

I went to my local store the night before, and the store hours were clearly posted on the window as opening at 7am (everyday, normal store hours, mind you).

I got up late, got there by 7:30 and another guy and myself grabbed the last two they had. I also picked up Blood Diamond for 15, too.

FYI, they were out of the plasma TV's, and the lady behind me got the last laptop. I wasn't in the market for either, but just wanted to pass on the info.

RE: Or
By TheDiceman on 11/2/2007 5:51:55 PM , Rating: 2
Luckily there are several in the neigborng suburbs if you had bothered to look. There is one in Niles all of 10 minutes from whre I grew up in Chicago.

RE: Or
By KristopherKubicki on 11/2/2007 6:03:07 PM , Rating: 2
I couldn't get a Zipcar this morning.

RE: Or
By DragonMaster0 on 11/2/2007 6:09:43 PM , Rating: 5
Or even simpler, people don't know what BluRay and HD-DVDs are. I know nobody or almost who knows what an HD-DVD or BluRay is. Same for SACD and DVD-Audio.

RE: Or
By mcnabney on 11/5/2007 5:57:27 PM , Rating: 2
You make a good point.

This may not be a case of Beta vs VHS in which one side eventually won.

It could be like SACD vs DVD-A, which had two losers.

RE: Or
By aos007 on 11/5/2007 7:11:53 PM , Rating: 2
Huh? Say what? Plenty of SACD keep coming out and I keep buying them. SACD only makes sense for well recorded material with wide dynamic range - classical and jazz - and in those genres SACD is more popular than it was when it launched, especially because of hybrid discs. Many stores do not bother stocking SACD separately, but chances are you'd find some where regular ones are.

Of course, classical music isn't popular and many stores don't carry it at all, leading to impression that SACD is dead.

RE: Or
By AlexWade on 11/4/2007 7:51:22 AM , Rating: 3
Or, just because there were no lines doesn't make it a bust. My Wal-Mart had no lines for this thing. I live in a smaller and poorer city. There were no lines. But several people in the store implied it was a hot seller. I went in at 11 a.m. to get mine. As I checked out, the couple behind me bought one. And I saw one in the back of someone's station wagon as I walked out the door. But no lines. They still sold out by noon. But no lines.

RE: Or
By Spuke on 11/5/2007 12:33:41 PM , Rating: 2
I got the last two at one of the local Walmart's. People were buying two or more at a time. Can't speak for the other local Walmart's (we have 4 total).

RE: Or
By Spuke on 11/5/2007 12:39:29 PM , Rating: 2
BTW, there were no lines either. We have 4 Super Walmarts and all are open 24 hrs.

RE: Or
By cleco on 11/5/2007 12:41:23 PM , Rating: 2
I had to wait the next day for a new shipment. Sold like hotcakes at both walmarts here

the real problem is the format war
By soydios on 11/2/2007 6:14:19 PM , Rating: 4
On the other hand, does it mean that even at under $100 people still aren’t willing to jump on the HD DVD bandwagon.

No, it means they aren't willing to jump onto either the HD DVD or BluRay bandwagons. These format wars are always detrimental to consumers.

For example, we have SecureDigital for small memory cards and other versions of it for even smaller needs, and CompactFlash for larger memory cards. So WHY do we need xD and MemoryStick?!?

Why do we need both BluRay and HD DVD? By now, both formats have enough of a hardware base that they'll both stick around. But High-Definition movie discs haven't reached critical mass yet because consumers don't want to pick a side in an undecided market! And thus, the companies are experiencing slower sales, etc. It's bad for everyone.

RE: the real problem is the format war
By marvdmartian on 11/5/2007 12:09:33 PM , Rating: 2
I think you're at least partially right, but let me put in my 2-cents:

1. Why invest now, when there's no clear cut winner? (pretty much the point you made)
2. Why invest now, when, by the time a clear cut winner is decided, it's highly likely that an even better quality format is going to arrive, which will trump both of these?? I mean, wouldn't it suck to jump on the the bandwagon of one of these HD formats, only to find out that next year it's become obsolete??
3. Why invest now, when the selling point of HD is (a) better quality sound and video (which I get good enough, for me at least, from my upconverting 1080i dvd player) and (b) more extra materials on the disk (which I don't bother watching 90% of the time anyways)??? I recently bought a dvd player that upconverts, plays divx (a bigger selling point than any HD player has come up with, imho), and has a usb input, for less than even the $99 HD-DVD Walmart player.

-and finally-
4. Why invest now, when all the movies I want to watch I can find on dvd, usually for less than $10, and can get new releases for usually less than $16??

Bottom line, I have NO reason to "upgrade" now.

By hcforde on 11/5/2007 5:04:14 PM , Rating: 2
These units will also upconvert. Ever try to buy an upconvert DVD player? If people only knew what the product was and what it could do there would have been lines. It is mostly a situation of ignorance rather than a statement of winning or losing as I see it. I live in Austin and decided to go to a smaller town to buy mine. I got there at 6:30 and NO LINES but by 8:45 they were all gone.

I now have an upconverter with the bonus that it plays HD DVD's ---- THAT IS THE PRIZE THAT PEOPLE MISSED BECAUSE OF IGNORANCE OF WHAT THE PRODUCT IS. When I told that to a lady that had come in for a laptop she decided to buy the HD-A2.

RE: the real problem is the format war
By Oregonian2 on 11/5/2007 2:09:58 PM , Rating: 2
For example, we have SecureDigital for small memory cards and other versions of it for even smaller needs, and CompactFlash for larger memory cards. So WHY do we need xD and MemoryStick?!?

Sony probably agrees that the situation is a poor one and would like to have their Memory Stick be the "big" standard, and Memory Stick Duo be the small standard. The small is even usable in a big application with an adapter that is often provided with the smaller Duo version. They've got both covered with one standard.

So why don't the makers of SD and CF drop their products and make Memory sticks?

P.S. - There are two or three Memory stick suppliers other than Sony.

P.P.S. - It's like everything else, all agree with you and would like their standard to be that single one.

P.P.P.S. - Not sure why to make SD one of them though, it tops off at 2GB (there's a SDHC but it's really a completely new incompatible standard that happens to physically look like the old one and has a similar name). And 2GB is starting to get small, sweet spot right now is at 4GB and rising.

By UNCjigga on 11/5/2007 3:43:09 PM , Rating: 2
Nice way to put Sony's spin on the argument--do you work for them? :) SD is sponsored by an industry-association, and MemoryStick is sponsored by Sony. Sure, Sony licenses other memory-makers to bring MemoryStick products to market, but that's nowhere near the level of support that SD enjoys. How many CE manufacturers other than Sony use MemoryStick as their device's memory expansion format? I'm not talking about "12-in-1" memory card readers.

SDIO and SDHC do bring wrinkles to equation and support isn't universal, but it also speaks to the flexibility of the SDAlliance in keeping up with changing technology.

By Spuke on 11/5/2007 10:58:46 PM , Rating: 2
No, it means they aren't willing to jump onto either the HD DVD or BluRay bandwagons. These format wars are always detrimental to consumers.
ROFLMAO!!!! Why do geeks always assume everyone else is a geek? Joe Six pack can't even spell Bluray!!! The only people that know about this stuff is US!!! LOL@"These format wars are always detrimental to consumers." You guys crack me up. Thanks for the laugh.

Ppl Don't Know
By afkrotch on 11/3/2007 10:03:25 AM , Rating: 3
The majority of ppl simply don't know the difference between the two, let alone the difference between regular tvs and HDTVs. All they know is that HDTV is hi-def and that somehow everything connected to it will be hi-def. Regular non-HD cable, a NES, etc.

Others might be shot off by the prices of the formats themselves. The extra costs added onto buying an HD-DVD or Blu-ray movie. Which I don't even understand why they have a higher cost. Isn't an HD-DVD suppose to use the same manufacturing costs as a regular DVD? So why the extra price?

Only reason I haven't bought HD-DVD is, if it fails, I'm stuck a worthless player. I did buy a PS3, but even if blu-ray fails, I'll still be able to get games.

RE: Ppl Don't Know
By Master Kenobi on 11/3/2007 10:21:10 AM , Rating: 2
Given the way DVD's went, even if HD DVD loses the market for dual format players will grow. Given that most of the parts are the same across the formats in the players, dual format players will become more and more prevalent as time goes on.

RE: Ppl Don't Know
By TontoGo on 11/3/2007 9:24:57 PM , Rating: 2
That is true. Manafacturers will try to differentiate by adding stickers, I mean "value" to get their display model to stick out in a sea of clones.

Too secret
By TheDiceman on 11/2/2007 5:47:23 PM , Rating: 2
Honestly I think they just not promote it enough for people whoa re actaully prone to theatre tech to buy. I consider myself pretty consious of new product and good sales, but if I did not rea sites like daily tech, well, daily, I would never even have known about it. Hell, they did not even mail out a flier for the sale where I live but the Wal-Mart did indeed have at least 30 or so available. I personally only have a 720P LCD and just did not see it as being worth it until I have a 1080 setup.

RE: Too secret
By murphyslabrat on 11/5/2007 12:21:20 PM , Rating: 2
It could just be that they only sold out of correct punctuation and spelling, which would explain the quality of your post.

But, honestly, I don't think that an HD-TV is even worth the cost of upgrading. I may not be the person to ask, but I got a cheap TV, and it makes movies quite enjoyable (more enjoyable than without a TV, at least ^^j). In some ways, it is akin to the good-ol'-fashioned radio vs. TV argument: experience assisted by your imagination vs a clearer transcribing of their imagination. Some people are spoiled rotten and unable to enjoy anything where you cannot read the tags on clothing, and some--like me--can enjoy an opening-week VHS of Princess Bride.

Can it be better? Yep. Is it worth $100 to me, along with an extra $10-$20 per movie? Nope.

RE: Too secret
By slacker57 on 11/5/2007 4:47:41 PM , Rating: 2
He might have had some grammar errors, but at least his post made sense...

[Not equal to] impulse buy
By OblivionMage on 11/2/2007 6:08:56 PM , Rating: 2
I think that most people at least, if they even knew about the new formats, would want a new lcd/plasma 1080pixel tv before they buy a player. These easily trump the cost of these new players, so seeing one on a low price, without any prior notification of the sale, I doubt many would just simply buy it.

RE: [Not equal to] impulse buy
By mcnabney on 11/5/2007 6:04:36 PM , Rating: 2
I think you mean 1080p (p for progressive, not pixel)

Those will be dipping into the three figure mark this holiday season. Finally.

But I wouldn't hurry just yet. Pretty soon 4K will arrive...

RE: [Not equal to] impulse buy
By Spuke on 11/8/2007 4:52:15 PM , Rating: 2
Walmart was also selling 50" plasmas for $1000 at the same time as the $98 HD DVD deal and I saw loads of those TV's heading out the door when I showed up to get my A2.

BluRay Player under $100
By FS on 11/3/2007 8:54:08 AM , Rating: 2
On the other hand, does it mean that even at under $100 people still aren’t willing to jump on the HD DVD bandwagon.

Let's say, Walmart decides to sell a BluRay Player, in a secret sale, at under $100 next week, and you go back to your local Walmart and check if there is a line or not. I am sure you'll find the answer to your question.

RE: BluRay Player under $100
By johnsonx on 11/3/2007 1:07:42 PM , Rating: 2
not quite a valid comparison. People wanting an HD-DVD player know that the coming holiday shopping season will bring deals at least that good if not better. So there was no special reason to go out yesterday to Walmart to get one.

For a BluRay player though, $100 would be so insanely cheap that it would compel people to show up. They know there's no way they'll see another deal that low until at least next year.

RE: BluRay Player under $100
By Spuke on 11/5/2007 12:44:02 PM , Rating: 2
$100 is insanely cheap for any of the players. Why are you guys always trying to make this a HD DVD vs Bluray arguement? $100 for either player is a good deal, period!! If Walmart was selling Bluray players for $100, I would own a Bluray player but they didn't have that, they had HD DVD so I bought that.

By EricMartello on 11/6/2007 2:04:04 AM , Rating: 1
This is hilarious...people getting all excited about a $98 HD-DVD Player. I have to wonder, if these people are so poor that they couldn't afford *ahem* "weren't willing to buy" an HD DVD player until it hit this price point, what the hell are they connecting it to? I mean, do they even have enough room for an HDTV with surround sound speakers in their double-wide trailer?

There are no worthwhile 1080p HDTVs under $1,500...and I'm being optimistic with that price point, because typically you're north of $2,500 for a decent 1080p LCD; and $3,500 plus for a 1080p Plasma. Either way you go, you're still shelling out money in the $x,xxx range, and if you don't, there's no point to having an HD-DVD player.

Conceivably, you could go with a 720p HDTV, but then you're not really getting the most out of your...$98 investment. bwahahaha :D

Cheap people...they're such a riot.

RE: Funny
By Spuke on 11/8/2007 4:59:08 PM , Rating: 2
I find it funny that you think only the poor can only take advantage of a good deal and rich people pay full price for everything. How to do you think the rich stay rich? By blowing their money? Obviously, YOU don't know jack about how to keep money.

J6P is not interested in getting the best product, they're interested in getting the best product for their money. My household income is north of $100K and my philosophy is best bang for the buck. There are some instances (case by case) where getting the absolute best IS the best bang for the buck.

Worthwhile and not worthwhile are subjective at best. If the picture of a HDTV has 80% of the quality of the best and the price is REALLY cheap, guess what the average person will buy?

Ignorant people, they're such a riot.

By Roy2001 on 11/5/2007 1:52:25 PM , Rating: 2
I am not really an early bird and I already have a HD-A2. I went to WM 8am before went to office to grab a few movies. When I arrived CE/DVD area, the sales guys was annoucing that they ran out of DVD players. So even those arrived before 8am did not get it.

Plane logic
By Kyanzes on 11/4/2007 6:42:06 AM , Rating: 1
Lines? Don't be a square! Only certain circles buy it!

"Spreading the rumors, it's very easy because the people who write about Apple want that story, and you can claim its credible because you spoke to someone at Apple." -- Investment guru Jim Cramer
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