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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RE: The Break HD-DVD needed
By Locutus465 on 11/8/2007 11:28:44 AM , Rating: 2
Banshee has a good point about HD-DVD pricing... I own an HD-A2 my self which I picked up for $130 at Circut City. The HD-A2 is now out of production however, and the $100 to $130 price point was a one time thing thus far... So if you don't have one now, then you'll have to wait and see what happens for black friday...

That said, Toshiba still has a significant price advanatage over any SA BD player (sony is fixated on PS3 for some reason) and this is unlikely to change any time soon. What sony doesn't understand is that most people don't want a PS3 as their DVD player, they want an actual SA DVD player which is stackable and quite a bit more silent than a PS3...

I do realize that the PS2 had a big impact on original DVD adoption, and it gave BD desperatly needed life, however you're crazy to think if BD is going to survive on the back of the PS3... People want SA DVD players, Toshiba is offering (compared to BD) in expensive HD-DVD players which offer the exact same feature set as BD... With christmas season sales, and expected price reductions on the HD-A3 to as standard price of $199.99 (or lower) BD will very quickly find it's self in a bad spot. And unfortunetly this time around it really does look like Sony and co. is taking a "wait and see what happens" approch to Toshiba's HD-DVD sales (which were held at walmart in conjunction with a significant sale on HD-DVD content). It is looking quite possible that BD group isn't going to respond to this onslaught until it is already too late for them. At least here in NA, once the battle here in NA is done the battle for Europe will start in ernest.

RE: The Break HD-DVD needed
By Spuke on 11/8/2007 1:54:26 PM , Rating: 2
The HD-A3 will be available for $170 on black friday which is still a great price.

RE: The Break HD-DVD needed
By Locutus465 on 11/8/2007 2:02:16 PM , Rating: 2
Can't complain about that price for a 3rd generation player that's bundled with 2 movies + the 5 you get in the mail for free! Player is almost free with all the extras.

"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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