Thursday, February 21, 2008

Format war victory for Blu-Ray

As The Hollywood Reporter notes, victory for Blu-Ray in the High Definition DVD format war was completed yesterday when Paramount became the sixth and final major Hollywood studio to adopt the Sony-backed standard.

The news followed Toshiba's announcement on Tuesday morning that it would cease the development, manufacture and marketing of its own HD DVD players by the end of March.
Janet Murray, director of Georgia Tech's masters and Ph.D. program in digital media, said a single format supported by all six major studios has a much better chance of success than two rival ones that each take only a chunk of Hollywood.

"It's a big victory for the consumer," she said.

Now that the studios are no longer battling each other over which format is best, Murray said, they can focus on generating awareness among consumers of the many benefits of high-definition media. Murray predicts "a standardization of extras" now that everyone's releasing films on a single format rather than two, each with its own set of capabilities. "This will lead to a much richer experience for viewers," she added.
Whether Blu-Ray is actually any better than HD DVD remains unclear. Perhaps it just had a cooler name.

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