Actually, no it’s not. We’re nowhere near the end, yet countless fortune tellers seem to have called the winner. Let me share with you some facts and you’ll see how far we truly are from deciding on an HD disc format.
I’ll be honest. I’m one of those who have called the winner already, but TDG Research over at Digital Trends has convinced me otherwise. Check out the facts:
Yes, Blu-ray has a slight advantage over HD DVD when it comes to player count. For every 5 Blu-ray players, there’s only 1 HD DVD player, but out of the 1.5 million Blu-ray players, 1.4 million are PS3s. Recent research done by TDG found that only 40% of disc playing console owners use their consoles for movie playback. After all that number crunching, Blu-ray’s advantage isn’t as great as it appears.
In June of 2007 there were 1.8 million high-def players running wild in our homes. That’s a lot of players! Actually, no it’s not. It’s only 1.3% of of the 140 million stand-alone disc players in the US. There’s a lot of people left to buy HD players.
There are many companies that could jump in the format war at any moment that’ll turn the tides quite significantly, especially PC OEMs and the bigger players in disc sales, specifically Wal-mart, which owns 45% of the DVD sell-thru market, followed by Best Buy and Target. The fact that Blockbuster chose to sell only Blu-ray discs in its brick and mortar stores is really not a big deal at all.
While Blu-ray holds a bit of a lead in the HD format race, the lead is barely a quarter mile in a 25 mile marathon. Perhaps this holiday season will produce a significant lead in favor of one of the formats.