updated 09:50 am EST, Thu January 4, 2007
BR and HD Hybrids
Two announcements today in advance of CES are poised to change how home theater enthusiasts approach Blu-Ray and HD DVD, according to news from LG and Warner Brothers. The former has confirmed that it will uses its presence at the Las Vegas show to demonstrate a hybrid player that can read both of the opposing next-generation disc formats, eliminating the fear of obsolescence that the company says has driven many potential early adopters away from the new technology. No details of the player beyond this key feature have been revealed, but the company plans to release the mystery device early this year.
Additionally, a report by the New York Times notes that Warner Brothers will complement LG's design by releasing hybrid movie discs. Confirming early news, Warner Brothers said it has developed a multi-layer format known as Total HD that can store a movie in Blu-Ray format on one layer of a disc while offering the same content on a deeper layer inside. The disc standard could be more popular than a multi-format player as it would cost only a few dollars more per movie and would ensure that shoppers could always find a copy in the store, Warner claims. The availability of Total HD will remain unknown until the CES introduction but may eventually include discs with DVD video on the reverse side.