Armed with continually strong sales data, the Blu-ray Disc Association has said that Blu-ray will replace the DVD storage format within three years.
“Within three years it will just be Blu-ray,” Frank Simonis, the Blu-ray Disc Association’s European chairman, said at the CeBIT technology trade show.
That’s a bold statement considering that the 5.2 million Blu-ray discs sold worldwide are a far cry from the billions of standard DVDs that have been sold. In the US, 80 percent of homes have a standard DVD player, while less than two percent have a Blu-ray player.
According to sources cited by Video Business Online, consumers bought around 250,000 Blu-ray movies during the month of January, compared to the estimated 125,000 HD DVD movies.
“Every week it grows,” said Rich Marty, VP of new business development at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. “It’s growing faster than DVD did. Each month it just looks more and more promising.”
Could this be the final nail in the proverbial coffin for HD-DVD?
In defence of HD-DVD, Ken Graffeo, executive VP of marketing and head of high definition at Universal Studios Home Entertainment, told VBO, “You can’t look at the last two months as a trend or as what the consumer wants to do in this format,” Graffeo said. “It’s really an artificial, short time period.”
The HD-DVD camp has conceded it is being outsold by Blu-ray, and the PS3 has been cited as a reason for Blu-ray’s success. But the HD-DVD camp claims that sales of movie titles in the two formats are still level. This is a claim disputed by Blu-ray supporter 20th Century Fox, which claims that weekly Blu-ray film sales are actually three times higher than HD-DVD.
Steve Feldstein of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, as sited in Psxextreme, said that HD-DVD ”was is in its final phase. It’s never been a question of if Blu-ray will pass HD-DVD, but a matter of when.”
While Blu-ray’s sales figures are still far from the billions of standard DVDs that have been sold, some analysts believe that Blu-ray is strong enough to replace DVD and eventuallu become the successor format. The Blu-ray Disc Association’s goal to replace DVD may one day become a reality, but three years seems to be a very ambitious time frame.