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Chart of one week top ten and since-inception top ten HD DVD and Blu-ray

Information on the top 25 Blu-ray and HD DVD sold in 2007

Movie studios compared across the formats as of the week ending March 18

A comparison of HD DVD and Blu-ray over both formats' lifetime - All figures provided by SPHE
Latest sales figures show Blu-ray Disc outselling HD DVD seven to three

Sony, a clear backer of the Blu-ray Disc, has released a special report on the next-generation format’s current lead over HD DVD. Although the source of the report leads to immediately brings up the issue of obvious bias, the numbers cited come from reputable retail point-of-sake statistics source Nielsen VideoScan.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment was likely spurred to release the report based on the success of Casino Royale on Blu-ray Disc. The latest Bond flick debuted at the top of the next-gen format sales charts with 28,233 units, making it the fastest selling high-def disc to date. The release of Casino Royale also boosted Blu-ray sales 74.4 percent for the week ending March 18 as compared to the previous week. In comparison, HD DVD sales fell 14.1 percent compared to the week before that.

Blu-ray’s strong sales since the beginning of 2007 have given it a 7 to 3 sales ratio versus HD DVD. Year to date sales of Blu-ray are 549,730 units and for HD DVD 249,451 units.

Blu-ray’s lead isn’t as strong, however, when looking at cumulative sales since each format’s inception. Total sales for Blu-ray Disc are around 844,000 and for HD DVD an approximate total of 708,600 units. Blu-ray surpassed HD DVD in total units sold during mid-February.

In terms of movies, seven out of the top 10 best selling high-def movies of all time are Blu-ray titles. For the week ending March 18, nine out of 10 were Blu-ray titles. The only HD DVD to crack that week’s is The Departed in fifth place, while the Blu-ray version held second place.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment also broke down the high-def format unit market share. For Blu-ray, Sony leads with 32.2 percent, followed by Warner at 19 percent and Fox at 13.7 percent. For HD DVD, Warner accounts for 47.3 percent, followed by Universal with 38.3 percent and Paramount at 12.1 percent.

Although Nielsen VideoScan statistics are generally indicative of market trends, they do not include Wal-Mart and some online merchants. Sony’s choice to publish its findings after analyzing the latest numbers is a clear indication of the confidence that Blu-ray Disc has in winning the format war. Still, Blu-ray only took the lead from HD DVD in 2007, which HD DVD supporters blame on their format’s relatively sluggish recent months. With high-definition movie sales figures being insignificant when compared to the numbers that DVD sells, both HD DVD and Blu-ray have a ways to go before either one can truly be declared a winner.

For Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's full report, download the PDF document here courtesy of Digital Bits.

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Blu-Ray in Europe
By Tarfman on 4/10/2007 10:48:23 AM , Rating: 2
DingieM says that Europe is not fond of Blu-Ray - not so I am afraid. The PS3 is only available here in Europe since March 22nd and Blu-Ray titles are very thin on the ground. I know a number of people who have PS3 consoles who are only receiving their Casino Royale freebies about now. They are all very enthusiastic about buying and viewing Blu-Ray discs as many people here have HD televisions but have little access to HD content. The PS3 has done incredibly well sales wise in the UK and Ireland and Blu-Ray sales will pick up quickly as soon as the shops stock the titles. The roll out of titles has been very slow in the shops and soon as it ramps up sales will take off. If Europe is going to be quoted at people please look at it in the proper context of a delayed launch window from Japan and the US and please stop using it for HD DVD spin. The rollout of the PS3 is the stalking horse that will win the race and this looks increasingly inevitable by year end. This battle will further be accelerated to a swift conclusion as affordable 1080p screens come to the market. In this context the PS3 is a hugely attractive all round 1080p solution which will be extremely difficult to beat even if it is not obvious right now to those blindly wedded to HD DVD right now.

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By Lakku on 4/10/2007 11:20:14 AM , Rating: 2
While I can agree with most of what you say, I don't think 1080p screens will matter in the HD war, not counting the fact people listen to marketing far too much. Unless your screen is going to be over 60 to 70 inches, you won't get much benefit from 1080p. Now a days, I suppose most good TVs will just support it anyway, but the human eye can't discern, from a resolution standpoint, the difference between 1080p and 720p from more then about 8 to 10 feet away on a 55 inch screen, all things other then resolution being equal. That's a normal viewing distance in most homes. In other words, if you have a 37 inch TV you don't NEED 1080p.... then again, until the PS3 can output BD at 720p like all other players, you do have a point I guess. :-P

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By Tarfman on 4/10/2007 11:52:26 AM , Rating: 2
Don't know about you but I can see a difference between 720p and 1080p when standing back a bit from 50" screens and using a proper 1080p source. Maybe its just me but I didn't think my glasses were that good! Have you done a back to back comparison? I will definitely be going 1080p plasma and it is matter probably of Panasonic 1080p vs Pioneer Plasma 2.0 when they come out mixed in with price - ie will the Pioneer be affordable and if so will the premium over the Panasonic be worth it?

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By BMFPitt on 4/10/2007 12:26:11 PM , Rating: 2
Sure you can tell the difference between the two TVs side to side. But how much can you tell when they're not?

Except for the "money to burn" crowd, most people who already have an HDTV won't buy a new one just for 1080p, and even when buying one anyway only if the price difference is less than 10-20%.

I can't imagine getting rid of my 57" 1080i Toshiba rear projection within the next 5-7 years unless I see significantly better (and much thinner) sub-$1000 TVs.

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By Hawkido on 4/10/2007 6:13:34 PM , Rating: 2
until the PS3 can output BD at 720p like all other players, you do have a point I guess

Correct me if i am wrong... There is no problem with the PS3 displaying at 720P... ever. You are thinking of the TV upscaling scandle where the HDTV's that only support 1080i and not 720P, caused a problem for Games that only supported 720P and lesser resolutions on the PS3, not movies which are encoded at 1080P then downscaled to the nearest rez if needed. I guess the "Other Players" you mentioned can add the 720P function to older HDTVs? Can they make my SDTV do 1080P? Okay, all sarcasm aside.
If you are going to make fun of the PS3, you shouldn't have to make stuff up about it, there are lots of things wrong with it without using your imagination!

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By masher2 on 4/10/2007 11:34:14 AM , Rating: 3
I have no clue what you're trying to say. BOTH BD and HD-DVD are 1080p. How in the world do you think "1080p screens" are going to have any effect whatsoever on who wins the format war?

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By BMFPitt on 4/10/2007 11:45:50 AM , Rating: 2
I think he's trying to say that people will start buying a bunch of 1080p TVs, and thus will want to buy one format or the other. They will see the PS3 as a good deal (i.e. a Blu-Ray player with gaming capabilities.)

As far as I'm concerned, 1080p TVs will have minimal impact on the adoption rate. Either format will look just great on a 720p or 1080i, and most people who already have an HDTV won't see a reason to upgrade.

This war won't begin until the prices drop.

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By CorrND on 4/10/2007 3:06:52 PM , Rating: 2
This war won't begin until the prices drop.

We're SO close! Pricegrabber is showing the Toshiba HD-A2 going for $311 today, down from around $340 last week and $370-ish before the MSRP drop by Toshiba. I'm guessing the online price is going to settle just below $300 in the next couple weeks.

That's starting to look awfully attractive to the average consumer.

Once HD hits $200 -- probably fall, heading into the Christmas season -- this baby is really going to heat up!

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By staypuff69 on 4/11/2007 4:43:59 AM , Rating: 2
wow really???? lmfao

Where I am a Sony PC Blue Ray player went from $899 to $449 in just 6 weeks.... I think HD DVD is in for a long fight...

Oh and converting that to US funds thats about $399.... so much for the price cuts on HD DVD.... LOL

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By CorrND on 4/11/2007 11:44:23 AM , Rating: 2
You're comparing apples to oranges. If you want to compare PC drives, I point you to the Xbox 360 HD-DVD drive which can be had for only $187 according to pricegrabber. That's less than half the cost of the Blu-ray drive you're quoting.

Getting back to actual players, Blu-ray only has a competitive player-price right now because of the PS3. People are willing to pay a slight premium to get the PS3 because there's so much more functionality. Once the HD-DVD players get down around $200, that slight premium becomes a HUGE premium and their advantage disappears.

Since Sony is already taking a loss at the current selling price of the PS3, there's no way the PS3 is going to drop in price to match HD-DVD players around $200. Sony's only hope is for their set-top players to come down in price, but their cheapest players have consistently been 50-100% more expensive than Toshiba's HD-DVD players.

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By DingieM on 4/11/2007 3:42:08 AM , Rating: 1
Do not forget that the second sales week in the UK the PS3 sales plummeted with 82% down.
That is huge.
How come?
Too expensive?
Whats the deal with 600 euro's costing hardware when HD-DVD players from for example Toshiba are dropping down sharply in price, and coming down way below that of the PS3? Don't expect a price-drop in the near future because $ony is losing hundreds of dollars/euro's per console while the Xbox360 is making profit on a console since last december.
Added capabilities for playing games is not really added value since many people still won't play games...
The PS3 can be successful because it floats on the immense success of the PS2. People are ofcourse expecting a lot from the PS3 because of its predecessor.

RE: Blu-Ray in Europe
By jadedeath on 4/15/2007 1:38:19 AM , Rating: 2
Please don't tell me that you're this blind.

The 82% is due to supply and demand, they simply ran out of PS3's across Europe in the second and 3rd weeks.

Furthermore the Sony execs are probably laughing all the way to the bank, they might lose money per PS3, but with titles like Casino Royale and others soon to be released on BD they're going to be making money hand over fist.

In the long run they lose a few hundred on the PS3, but they gain more than that back per-game and per-BD sold. Considering they own MGM, and Columbia-Tristar that means they get ALL the profit from those releases they're most likely sitting pretty happy at where everything stands right now.


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