With Blu-ray Disc the clear victor in the high-definition
format war, there are two possible directions for hardware pricing. Those
previously on the fence will regain confidence in the future of high-definition
movies and will purchase more players, causing prices to fall from economies of
scale. The other angle is that hardware prices will remain status quo due to
the fall of HD DVD.
Thankfully for consumers, it appears that at the biggest
Blu-ray Disc backer of all plans to make hardware more affordable as time goes
quoted Sony Electronics CEO Stan Glasgow on the continual price drops of
hardware at around $100 a year.
“I don't think $200 is going to happen this year. Next year
$200 could happen,” said Glasgow. “We'll be at a $300 rate this year. $299 will
happen this year.”
Should a $299 Blu-ray Disc player materialize, it could be
the first time that standalone hardware would be cheaper than a PlayStation 3 –
unless, of course, there are to be further price drops on the Sony console.
The falling prices won’t come from cheaper Chinese brands,
however, as Glasgow made it clear that the Blu-ray Disc Association has yet to
license any of the technology outside the larger electronics companies.
Sony recently announced its first Blu-ray Disc Profile 2.0
BDP-S350 and the BDP-550 at about $400 and $500,
Other tidbits releases by Glasgow include Sony’s drop of
Memory Stick slots on its televisions, perhaps as another sign the format’s
under-acceptance. High-end televisions, though, sold well – with half of them