updated 01:55 pm EST, Tue January 22, 2008
Blu-ray HW Dominates HDDVD
Sales of Blu-ray devices soared in the immediate wake of Warner Bros' Blu-ray decision, say new findings published by the research group NPD. Although sales of devices that can play the two formats were virtually even in the first week of January, with Blu-ray only just holding the lead over HD DVD at 51.1 percent, the results are said to have tilted dramatically in Blu-ray's favor in the week afterwards. Just over 92.5 percent of buyers chose a device with the format while less than 7.5 continued to buy HD DVD equipment, the study notes.
In turn, the results for the first two weeks of January also point to longer-term gains, with about 69.4 percent of sales during the first part of the month going to Blu-ray versus just 60.1 percent for the whole of December. Neither this nor the week-by-week tally includes Sony's PlayStation 3 console, which is believed to be skewing results further in favor of Blu-ray.
The sudden shift is credited almost exclusively to Warner, whose decision to drop HD DVD releases will place more than 70 percent of all HD movies in the Blu-ray format when the switch takes effect in June. A number of retailers have already announced retail plans to scale back HD DVD shelf space or introduce HD to stores only in Blu-ray format since the Warner announcement. The news is expected to have a significant impact on computer releases as well, with computers using Blu-ray drives more likely to be chosen than HD DVD-equipped models. [via Digital Bits]