Wednesday, 4 February 2009

The Blu-Ray and HD DVD Format War

By Pete Tanks

Blu-ray is currently the primary high definition optical disc, and no other competitors are on the market. It was not always like this, however. Before Blu-ray became the official medium, there was a competitor that competed for the same position.

Toshiba created a type of disc known as HD DVD. This was the main competitor of Sony's Blu-Ray for six years. It was only towards the end of the war that the victor became apparent.

Before Blu-ray became the only option, an even number of distributors supported both format options. For years, it was essentially a 50/50 split of the market.

HD DVD and Blu-ray share many similarities. They have the same wavelength of laser, which is a blue-violet one. Blu-ray discs have higher memory but still function closely to HD DVDs.

In addition to memory, Blu-ray discs can achieve greater speeds than HD DVDs. This is because Blu-ray has a bit rate of about forty megabits, while HD DVDs only have a little less than thirty.

Although Blu-ray has specific advantages over HD DVD, it was not these that led to its victory. Blu-ray succeeded because a major motion picture studio (Warner Brothers) chose it over HD DVD. This had a domino effect that led to Toshiba's defeat.

The final deciding factor was the incorporation of Blu-ray in to the Playstation 3. Since the game system was so wildly popular, the fact that it supported Blu-ray and not HD DVD was quite important. Of course since both the PS3 and most Blu-ray players are made by Sony, this was not surprising.

It is nearly impossible to find HD DVDs in stores anymore, as the format war officially ended when Toshiba announced it would stop developing HD DVD players in February 2008. Since Blu-ray is a better format, not many people minded the fall of its competitor.

About the Author:
The author owns the blog Blu-Ray-Movies-Reviews showcases several blu ray movie reviews.


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