Considering their reputation as the machine of the media-loving artistic type, Macs have a major hole in their multimedia offering at present: no support for Blu-ray playback. Rumour has it that this is set to change with the up-and-coming release of iTunes 8.2.
A report over on CNet
points to an entry in the “About iTunes
” splash screen which makes mention of Blu-ray technologies. While nobody from the company has come forward with an official statement – or a demonstration of the playback in action – all signs point to imminent support for the format.
At present it's impossible to buy a Mac with Blu-ray drive, and while third party devices – both internal and external – can be added, there's no way to play back content found on the disc within MacOS X itself. If iTunes 8.2 brings Blu-ray support to the OS, it addresses a hole which is only going to get bigger as the demand for high-definition grows larger.
The rumours of Blu-ray support come despite commentary by Steve Jobs late last year in which he described the process by which a company can apply for a Blu-ray licence “a bag of hurt
” which was both complex and expensive. With HD-DVD out of the picture, and Windows-based PCs having supported Blu-ray playback – albeit via third-party software – for quite some time, it looks like Jobs might have to work with the industry on this one.
If the rumours of Blu-ray support in iTunes 8.2 are true, the move is likely to be headlined at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference this June.
Any Mac users here who have been crying out for Blu-ray support, or is Jobs right when he claims that physical media is set to be replaced by digital downloads? Share your thoughts over in the forums