Thursday, November 29, 2007

Promo Groups Oppose Achievements of Blu-Ray and HD DVD Formats

Both Blu-ray disc (BD) and HD DVD promotion groups on Tuesday released statements claiming achievements of their formats. The Blu-ray disc Association said that one million of movies on BD have so far been sold in Europe, whereas the HD DVD Promotional Group in North America boasted that 750 thousand of HD DVD players have been sold through in the region.

One Million BD Movies Sold in Europe, 0.6 per BD Player

Blu-ray disc Association (BDA) is reported to have said that one million Blu-ray movies have been sold so far in European countries where such movies are available. The information is based on data from Media Control GFK International market research firm and should reflect actual amount of movies sold to end-users. It is interesting to note that with game BDs combined, Sony and other members of the Blu-ray camp have sold 21 million discs in Europe.

According to the market tracker, Blu-ray disc commands 73% of high-definition video market in Europe, reports Reuters news-agency.

Earlier this month HD DVD Promotional Group said citing Media Control GFK International that in Europe customers have bought 3.8 movies with each HD DVD player sold whereas every owner of a Blu-ray disc player (including both standalone players as well as PlayStation 3, which also features BD capability) has acquired only 0.6 movies. Such a low attach rate is not a surprise: the vast majority of installed Blu-ray players are Sony PlayStation 3 game consoles, which are acquired mostly for gaming. Therefore, the fact that BD video games outsell BD movies by a factor of 20 is hardly unexpected.
HD DVD Camp Celebrates 750 Thousand Players Sold in the USA

The North American HD DVD Promotional Group announced on Tuesday that sales of dedicated HD DVD players exceeded the 750 thousand mark. The data is based on retailer reports and other point of sale data, thus, should represent the actual number of HD DVD hardware units that was acquired by end-users.

The promo group decided to include both standalone set-top players as well as the Xbox 360 HD DVD add-in drive in the number of “dedicated HD DVD players” sold so far. Even though sales of HD DVD add-on for Microsoft’s latest game consoles have been weak, according to reports, they still somewhat distorted the number of sold-through dedicated HD DVD players that were acquired by video enthusiasts. HD DVD player movie attach rate in the U.S. is unknown.

“HD DVD continues to gain momentum and market share with consumers. With more than four weeks left for holiday shopping, HD DVD is turning out to be a perfect consumer electronics gift,” said Ken Graffeo, executive vice president of HD strategic marketing for Universal Studios Home Entertainment, and co-president of the HD DVD Promotional Group.

Blu-ray disc Association has not released the amount of standalone BD players sold so far. According to NPD Group, nearly two million PlayStation 3 game consoles have been sold in the USA, considerably more than 750 thousand of HD DVD devices. Moreover, according to some data, Blu-ray movies outsell HD DVD by two times. Still, since PS3 is likely to be acquired primarily for gaming, eventually HD DVD movies may find themselves more popular compared to Blu-ray.

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