Print 63 comment(s) - last by Locutus465.. on Nov 20 at 4:30 PM

HD DVD players get a sales lift thanks to sub-$100 pricing

The battle in the next generation high-definition DVD format war is far from over. HD DVD and Blu-ray have been fighting it out in the market for roughly a year and neither side shows any signs of giving up the fight.

In late October, DailyTech reported that Blu-ray disc sales held a commanding lead over HD DVD for the first nine months of 2007. Blu-ray outsold HD DVD by a 2-to-1 ratio racking up sales of 2.6 million units versus 1.4 million units for HD DVD.

Since the inception of both standards, a total of 3.01 million Blu-ray discs and 1.97 million HD DVD discs have been sold.

Toshiba, the main backer for HD DVD, decided to turn the tables a bit in order to swing the sales momentum back in its direction. One by one, retailers started dropping the price of the second generation Toshiba HD-A2 HD DVD player. Wal-Mart dropped the price of the player from $299.99 to $198 in late October. Circuit City and Amazon both followed suit pricing the player at $197.99.

On November 1, DailyTech brought you news of Wal-Mart's secret in-store sale which listed the price of the HD-A2 at an unheard of $98.87. Soon after, Best Buy countered by pricing the player at $99.99. Sales of the player were so furious at that the stock was depleted leaving backorders to be fulfilled with the third-generation HD-A3 at no additional charge.

It appears that Toshiba efforts to drive down the price of entry for HD DVD paid off. Video Business reports that 90,000 Toshiba HD DVD players were sold over the weekend thanks to the price drops.

For comparison, Sony has sold 100,000 of its $499 BDP-S300 set top player since its introduction during the summer.

Despite the weekend surge in HD DVD player sales, Sony can still claim the largest install base with its Blu-ray hardware. Since its introduction in November 2006, Sony had shipped over 5.51 million PlayStation 3 consoles -- each of which features a Blu-ray drive.

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Tell m eif this makes sense..
By StillPimpin on 11/7/2007 6:19:17 PM , Rating: 3
Even though I'm a big tech/gadget guy, my budget doesn't always afford me the ability to purchase the best technology. That being said, Blu-Ray is probably technically superior to HD DVD in all ways except the one that matters most to me, Price. I'm currently in the market for a replacement DVD player but I do not currently own a HiDef TV. So, I could throw my money at a cheap DVD player for the time being, or invest in hardware a little more high-end and future-proof my dollar for a few years.

I started out looking at up-converting DVD players and figured I could get a decent one for about $125, and I was completely comfortable with spending that on a solid DVD player that I could also use for "pseudo HiDef" when my budget could afford a TV.

Now, if I can get a device that would do DVD playback, 720P/1080i DVD up conversion, and play HiDef movies for only $100, I'd be crazy not jump at it. This way, I have all my bases covered for at least the 2-4 years until the whole "HiDef War" is decided. By then, even if Blu-Ray completely trounces HD DVD, I can still up convert regular DVD's, which btw are not going anywhere anytime soon, and I'm only out $100.

I don't see how at these prices anyone looking at a DVD player this holiday season, or anytime for that matter, could pass on one of these, especially if you currently own Blu-Ray. Technological superiority be damned, this is an awesome deal!

By Locutus465 on 11/7/2007 6:39:42 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, Bluray really isn't better than HD-DVD at all as far as your home entertainment center is concerned. In fact for some early adopters it could be seen as worse since there are early BD players that lack the kind of interactive speacial features that HD-DVD has enjoyed since day 1 thanks to HDi.

That being said, at this point (speaking from an entertainment center POV), Bluray and HD-DVD are equal tech-wise... Very quicly you should start finding that every BD player on the market is capable of the profile whatever features... The main difference is cost and your selection of exclusive content. If you find that you like BD exclusives enough that it's worth the 4x price increase over what people were paying durring this sale (or 2x with out the OMG sale) then go for it. If you don't think the exclusives are worth all that much, then I'd say you made the right choice.

That's why I ended up being a HD-DVD support... At first I really didn't know what to think, it didn't take a whole lot of Toshiba dropping the bottom out on HD-DVD prices and Sony not responding for me to decide I was all for HD-DVD... The fact that HD-DVD doesn't have regoin coding and BD does (even if not all players enforce it now, I'm pretty sure they'll all get firmware updates to start if BD wins) was just one very very nice bonus.

"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton

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