updated 04:25 pm EST, Fri November 7, 2008
Blu-ray prices dropping
Holiday prices for older Blu-ray players may fall in the $150-200 range over the holiday season, representing a price drop in spite of the industry's forecasts and expectations, according to ABI Research. The analyst group believes Blu-ray manufacturers need to drop their prices in order to fend off competitive pressure from high-definition movie download services and the need for strong sales during the holiday season after the recent market troubles.
Currently, lower-end Blu-ray disc players that are between six and nine months old are selling for about $200, with some vendors and manufacturers including four movie Blu-ray discs as an added incentive.
"Blu-ray vendors and dealers are starting to realize that for Blu-ray to become the next DVD, they need to lower player prices in order to generate interest and build volumes," says ABI Research's principal analyst Steve Wilson. Blu-ray manufacturers are faced with competition from high-definition download services such as those recently offered via the Xbox 360 and the Roku in conjunction with Netflix, as well as TiVo and Amazon.
Some Blu-ray player makers are using this to their advantage, however, as LG and Samsung have partnered with Netflix to let certain BD players download movies and TV shows. This distinction will allow Blu-ray players to further differentiate themselves from upconverting DVD players.