Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Blu-ray vs. HD DVD - should we care who wins?

With the ongoing debate about Blu-ray vs. HD DVD - I ask, does it really matter who wins? That is which format becomes the standard.

Blu-ray clearly seems to be in the lead considering the number of studios supporting it. Regardless of who wins, the battle ultimately will be short lived.

As consumers we've become accustomed to purchasing entertainment on various media and repurchasing them when a new format comes out. Yes I do have a few LP's that are also on cassette and CD, and a few VHS tapes in a box with DVD counterparts on the shelf. Now it is time to replace them with Blu-ray, HD DVD or both.

Yes I will be purchasing the Apple TV and hope the only Blu-ray discs in my collection become the ones bundled with PS3.

As devices become internet aware and services such as iTunes start making video rentals easily accessible and inexpensive, the market for plastic discs will just be for backups and recovery. I know that my in-store video rentals have decreased by about 50% since on-demand-video became available through my cable provider, and very much prefer browsing from the comfort of my own home.

One of the highlights of Steve Job's keynote last week was the ability to share video across devices. So you can start watching a video on your LCD TV through AppleTV and then transfer it to your iPhone and watch the rest at the airport.

So, for the winner in the race to become a standard, well done for now and enjoy it while you can.

I once heard that the greatest thing about standards is that there are so many to pick from.




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