PS3 price cut won't affect format war

Written by Phil Cogar

October 8, 2007 | 16:18

Tags: #battle #disc #format #hd-dvd #high-definition #price-cut #ps3 #war

Companies: #blu-ray #sony #toshiba

Last week, Sony introduced a cheaper PS3 model to the European market, which effectively introduced Blu-ray to a larger market. Now one could make an obvious conclusion that this move would increase the sales of BR discs and allow the format to make leaps and bounds over the sales figures of HD DVD. Well if you thought that, then you would be wrong - at least according to the European HD DVD Promotional group, that is.

The European PS3 price cut will have a minimal impact on the adoption of next generation HD formats. The real battleground is in sales of standalone players and HD DVD is out in front by a massive margin,” said Ken Graffeo, Co-Chairman of the European HD DVD Promotional Group. Of course, one has to take this with a grain of salt - this is the HD DVD Promo Group, after all.

According to the promotional group, HD DVD players hold 70 percent of the European market and they predict the numbers to grow. An HD DVD player manufactured by Venturer that will retail for less then €300 and the Toshiba HD-EP30 selling for less then €400 are a couple of the bigger pushing points for the format. Of course, having the HD DVD add-on for the Xbox 360 does not hurt things either.

Traditionally, games consoles aren't used as DVD players in home and a recent study seems to confirm this. A research study by The Diffusion Group shows that less then forty percent of all games console purchasers actually use them to watch DVDs.

A large library of movies is also helping to push the HD DVD format into European households. Over 1,000 movies are expected to be available worldwide on HD DVD before the end of the year. Big name movies like The Matrix and Bourne trilogies, Transformers, and Shrek the Third are exclusive to the format, as well as TV shows such as Star Trek: The Original Series, Battlestar Gallactica, and Heroes.

But no matter how many figures the respective format backers throw out, we still have a few more months to endure this format war. With the Christmas season now approaching us, players of both formats should start flying off of the shelves and, hopefully, a winner will finally emerge from the dust in the beginning of 2008.

All of this brings up a question I have for all of you: Do you watch DVDs on your games console? And if so, how often? Hop on over to the forums and let us know by voting in the poll.
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