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Blu-ray movies outselling HD DVD by a wide margin; still nothing decided

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Blu-ray v HD DVD

As the current next-generation format war between Blu-ray and HD DVD takes stock of sales figures from the all important Black Friday weekend, it appears that the Blu-ray camp has some encouraging news. Despite the aggressive pricing of HD DVD players (less than $200 in some locations) Blu-ray movie purchases have outpaced HD DVD movies nearly two to one.

Tracking firm Nielsen VideoScan released numbers showing that over 70 percent of high-definition discs purchased by consumers were Blu-ray Disc. Last month, a report from Home Media Research indicated that between January and October, Blu-ray Disc sold two and a half million units versus slightly less than one and a half million for HD DVD.

HD DVD buyers appeared to be less enthusiastic about buying HD DVD movies during the Thanksgiving holiday, with Blu-ray Disc sales outdoing HD DVD. The data from Nielsen VideoScan is not comprehensive, as they do not include sales from Wal-Mart, which represents nearly fourty percent of standard DVD sales.

Another possible explanation for Blu-ray Disc’s comparatively stronger showing is the timing of studio-exclusive like Ratatouille. HD DVD had no comparable blockbuster releases for the month of November and had to settle for such luke-warm titles as I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry.

Read [Home Media Magazine]

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  • Guest

    1080p has double the resolutions of the 1080i. Try to understand the output between interlaced vs. progressive. One more thing. 200gb > 51gb. To forgone 200gb and go for 51gb is just not making sense in any which way. Why don't we just stick with CD instead of DVD? Millions of companies will use blu-ray 200gb for their backups, not the baby HD-DVD 51gb.

  • HTPC Guy

    Where is the HD media player comparison? This seems to be a much more important leading indicator to estimate long term sales prospects. There have been roughly a billion DVD players sold over the last 10 years. When there are 10s or 100s of millions of HD media players in peoples homes the disk sales numbers will be interesting. Until then it is all about getting hardware in peoples hands.

  • Ron

    Plain and simple Blu ray is much better. I bought 11 blu rays on black frieday becuse they movies are better and price as well.

  • Tommy

    Fuzzy Math

    Ummm, it was 72 to 28 Blu Ray. That's nearly 3:1 not 2:1. And during the 07 holiday season. I think this war is finally winding down.

  • Scott

    What a biased and uninformed statement Ron. I own both a PS3 and a Toshiba HD. the difference is negligible. You may personally prefer the Blu ray but to say it one better come on. unfortunately the battle is just getting interesting and will most likely continue into mid next year at the very least.

  • Will

    "Another possible explanation for Blu-ray Disc’s comparatively stronger showing is the timing of studio-exclusive like Ratatouille."

    Isn't this just another strength of BD – the great movies released lately? Why would anyone use this in defence of HD DVD? Timing? Did HD DVD studios hold back something? Shrek and Transformers were released in the same time frame.

    "The data from Nielsen VideoScan is not comprehensive, as they do not include sales from Wal-Mart, which represents nearly fourty percent of standard DVD sales."

    - But not 40% of HDM. Best Buy rules the roost here per an article several weeks back. As well, they sell BD movies too. Yes they did blow out those Toshiba A2's for cheap, but they also had the 10 free BD movies with a PS3 that didn't count in the VideoScan numbers either.

  • Ed

    "As HD DVD saturates the market it will close the gap, especially when the PS3 dies under the boot heel of Wii and XBox 360 in a year."

    Umm since the price cut the ps3 sales have jumped 200% so I don't think its going anywhere and is gaining ground on the PSO 360 which breaks every month due to horrible hardware.

    I am a videophile and the average person may not be able to tell between 1080i and 1080p but for someone who likes quality there is a difference. I was going to buy the Toshiba hd dvd for 100 bucks until i found out it only pushes out 1080i.

    "Sure Blu-Ray has been outselling HD DVD, now check with Netflicks in the US and see which format is being rented more!"

    Last time I checked Netflicks is losing to blockbuster online who doesn't even rent out hd dvd. The biggest rental company in the US only rents out blu ray in there stores after having both formats in test stores and dropping hd dvd due to being out rented 3 to 1.

  • dale

    i think this format war has hardly started. the fact that so many of the blu-ray players are getting poor reviews is hardly a testimonial for superior technology. until they comedown in price and settle the hardware issues it's hard to declare that blu-ray is in any way superior.

  • Hans

    Hum.. I learned a few things today. Interlaced and progressive is the same, 70% more storage capacity is irrelevant, and HD DVD will win the format war.

    Gee, if only one of them where true.

  • Mel

    I am completely happy with my $98.99 Toshiba HD Player. The picture quality is fantastic and I didn't have to shell out over $499.00 for the unit. Who care which format wins, by the time it over, I may own both units for less than it cost to buy a BD unit today.

  • Superdynamite

    Do a lot of research before you buy. The inexpensive HD-DVD players are NOT full HD. They do not have a video output of 1080p. Hi Def movies are intended to be viewed at the BEST possible resolution which is 1080p. Any current player on the market with 1080p video output is $399.99. You can purchase a Used or Refurbished HD-DVD player for around $309.99 (Amazon), but I wouldn't chance it.

  • Superdynamite

    Barring anymore Payoffs, Kick-backs and bribes of Movie studios by Microsoft, HD-DVD should be completely dead in another month or so.

  • Michael Scapp

    I have 2 Blu-Ray players and a PS3. I couldn't be happier. Blu-ray is by far the superior format. Not even close. Sure, you can buy a cheapo HD-DVD player, but it's just not the same. The cheapo HD-DVD players are not 1080p. All full Hd 1080p players are pretty much the same price. I recommend Blu-Ray, hands down.

  • Kate Billingsley

    Blu-ray holds a 73% sales share in N. America and 94% everywhere else. Blu-Ray is completely crushing HD-DVD in sales. It's also, by far the most advanced technology on the market. I'm guessing the HDDVD format will last another 2 Months at the most.

  • JackManDoo

    100,000+ units a week in possible Transformers & Bourne Blu-ray Disc sales LOST by Paramount and Universal.

    How dumb is the guy from Paramount who inked that deal for HD-DVD exclusivity with Microsoft? Or how about the guy from Universal that decided to go HD-DVD.

    Do they still have their jobs?

    Universal & Paramount are in the same sinking ship. The S.S.HDDVD!

    The "Universal Blunder" has a nice ring to it.

    Merry Christmas Paramount & Universal. No bonuses this year!

    Let's see if you are dumb enough to miss the 2008 Holiday season as well.

  • babbaLOU

    "Still Nothing Decided"??? That is not true. The people have decided at the cash register. Blu73% – HDD27%. It's over.

  • GiGiSamone83

    The fomat war is officially Over. We'd like to thank everyone for coming. You can throw your HDDVD's in the bin by the door. Drive safely, and have a nice day.

    Nielsen/VideoScan Numbers ending November 25th (Includes Black Friday)

    WE: BD-72% HDD-28% YTD: BD-65% HDD-35% SI: BD-62% HDD-38%

    Blu skys above!

  • D

    HD format fanboys? REALLY????? You are fans of a video disk format!?!?!? Now, I've really heard it all. Don't you guys have ANYTHING better do do? This is just as pathetic as arguing who would win in a fight: Superman or The Hulk; or which computer is better: Apple or PC (GO PC! ;P). Can't people just be happy with what you have an just let others be happy with what they decide to go with?

    I mean, really… who gives a crap what format wins? I have a PS3, but if HD DVD happens to win the format war, so be it. I'll toss my blu-ray disks, buy an HD DVD player and go on with my life.

    Here, I got something really important we can all argue about: who would win in a fight? That chick from Dark Angel or the that chick from Alias? Winner: Who cares? That's hot!

  • Ned

    Wow! The Sony PR machine is working the boards full time today!

    A couple of things: 1080p vs 1080i is the exact same resolution, 1080! One is sent interlaced and the other is progressive. Guess what! There isn't an LCD or Plasma diplay in the world that will display 1080i! All displays will de-interlace 1080i and show progressive. PQ and SQ are the same.

    It's also not a big surprise that Blu-ray is currently outselling HD DVD. They have more players in the market because of the PS3. However, people who own HD DVD players are buying more discs per player then Blu-ray. As HD DVD saturates the market it will close the gap, especially when the PS3 dies under the boot heel of Wii and XBox 360 in a year.

    Lastly, HD DVD hardware was feature complete from the word go. Every feature on every disc that's been made or will be made will work on every HD DVD. The same cannot be said for Blu-ray. The second hardware spec is coming out now with another one set to come out next year.

    Want to watch that cool feature of how they put a CG shot together in the context of watching the movie? Never happen on any stand alone Blu-ray player sold to date. The hardware for it isn't in the box yet. Want to download new content for your discs from the web, or share your favorite bookmarks in a movie with someone else? Can't do it with Blu-ray stand alone, no mandatory ethernet or flash storage.

    HD discs make up around 1% of total disc sales. This war is just starting.

  • The_Omega_Man

    Yes I see the Blu-Ray FanBoy FUD machine is in full effect here too!

    1080i is not Full HD…Plez! The majority of HDTVs in homes today are not capable of displaying 1080p. Hell even some of the FULL HD 1080p HDTVs can not display 1080p correctly!

    Sure Blu-Ray has been outselling HD DVD, now check with Netflicks in the US and see which format is being rented more!

    HD DVD folks are not fanatically buying discs, just to support a optical media format!

    How many Blu-Ray disc do some of you Blu-Fanboy have that a) you have not even removed the wrapper and b) did not even really want?

    This format war is shaping up to be the Real Movie loving high value seeking folks against the largely adolescent PS3 gamers!

    Sony this tactic will ultimately backfire on you! Mark my words!

  • Jakey

    "Last time I checked Netflicks is losing to blockbuster online who doesn’t even rent out hd dvd."

    Blockbuster Online does rent out HD DVD. They didn't even make all of their brick and mortar stores exclusive to one format.

    "1080p has double the resolutions of the 1080i. Try to understand the output between interlaced vs. progressive."

    You're describing the difference between *recording* something on HD video in 1080i and 1080p. 1080i and 1080p output from an HD disc player may have a minute difference if one device is better at outputting progressive than the other. (I've actually found 1080i preferable in some cases; my player doesn't do 1080p amazingly well and deinterlacing by the HDTV is terrific.) There's certainly no kind of difference that could result in the claim that 1080p gives you "twice the resolution," for goodness' sake. You can see that for yourself if you give it a try.

  • Gregory Leone

    I have had a change of heart, and I see the light now. Blu-Ray is the worst, it is just a horrible format. HD-DVD had no bugs, the picture is better and the sound was far superior to Blu-Ray.

    Is there any chance that we could turn this around and support HD-DVD now?

    Blu-Ray SUX!

    (Disclaimer: This recent change of opinion has nothing to do with a financial agreement between myself and Microsoft.)

  • Free Movies

    Well now the smoke is clearing and Blu-ray has officially kicked HD DVD's butt… However, I will not buy one becouse Blu-ray players are more than four times the cost of standard DVD players.