Warners hold onto DVD format war killer
You know this format war between HD-DVD and Blu-ray for control of the next generation of High Definition in the home cinema market? Well Warner Brothers has a way to end it for everyone, and in a way that wouldn't mean anyone having wasted money. Yet they've decided not to release the solution until next year.
They've developed a dual sided disc that is HD-DVD one side and Blu-ray on the other which will mean it would work on either player. What's more is that there are dual format players starting to appear on the market already, so for the consumer the choice would be with them. Prefer HD-DVD or Blu-ray, it doesn't matter, the studio could release the film on both formats on one disc and you could have any of the required hardware at home to watch it.
So why are they delaying the release? Well so far there are only two studios who produce both formats independently of the battle, that's WB themselves and Paramount Pictures. The other studios produce their films on Blu-ray with only Universal producing solely on HD-DVD and they show no signs of changing.
From Wilmington Star Steve Nickerson, Warner's senior vice president of marketing, says:
"We need a critical mass of titles to go to retail with so they can establish a section...The concept is the right concept...You can't really use the disc until you have bought the concept that publishing in two formats is better than publishing in one."
We could be the ones benefiting from this because there really is no High Definition DVD format war. You can buy a player that plays both formats, or you can get your favourite film on a disc that has both formats on it to suit whatever player you own. Yet it's the studio's themselves that are perpetuating this battle.
Isn't it time they gave it up and thought about the consumer? Surely offering their films on both formats reaches a bigger audience and therefore means more revenue? For a start it means that both XBox 306 and PS3 owners could play their single release films. Isn't that profit reason enough for them?