Saturday, September 30, 2006

HD-DVD better than Blu-ray, says unscientific survey

CE Pro

Abstract: a study conducted by HDBlu that involved reading “more than 120 reviews on” has determined that consumers (at least, consumers who went out on a limb and bought either device this early in the game) favor HD-DVD.

Well, who can argue with that?

For what it’s worth, when I was in Denver two weeks ago for CEDIA Expo, the HD-DVD demos were significantly more impressive than Blu-ray, in addition to being qualitatively better than what we’ve seen with broadcast HDTV.

Naturally, while in Denver, the HD-DVD vs Blu-ray trainwreck debate was one that came up often that week when the drinks started to flow after hours. One point that Derek, our team’s Project Manager made, and that I agree with, is that he thinks that HD-DVD will gain traction in the marketplace because its name is so obvious. If you take an oblivious consumer and expose them to HD-DVD marketing, they are likely to understand that “HD + DVD must = High Definition on DVD. Cool!” “Blu-ray” on the other hand, is kind of a foofie name that doesn’t really tell you anything about what it does. Oh sure, us propeller heads know that it’s a reference to the blue wavelength that the laser uses to read the disc, but Joe and Jane Consumer are not going to get it. I think that Derek has an excellent point. I believed back in the day that the reason LaserDisc never really took off was because it reminded people of vinyl records at a time when the Compact Disc was taking over. This is no small reason why the DVD Consortium settled on the 12cm disc size for DVD: not just for backwards compatibility to play CD’s but to create a sense of familiarity and assurance in consumers’ hearts and minds.

That is, I think, a consideration that is not to be underestimated.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I completely agree and further, I would hope that one of the formats (b-r) die an early death so the rest of us who are too cash strapped to jump into the war (and lose) can start to see the usual price reduction of a stable format with well rounded acceptance (like DVD).
Having been fooled by the DVDA/SACD goof up, I am most certainly "once bitten, twice shy". I opted for the DVDA camp - and it's probably good that I did, but I have seen many titles on SACD that would love to have - but I refuse to buy another player or a multi-format capable player until the whole Hi-Def video battle has been won.
I think it is high time these manufactures wise up. The consumers really doesn't care who invented what (for the most part). And, as I believe, only care about three things: Price, reliability and performance.
Hopefully some sanity will prevail - although for Blu-Ray the writing may be on the wall....