The Hollywood Reporter claims that ‘reliable industry sources’ tell them Toshiba is finally ready to give up on HD DVD and will pull the plug ‘in the coming weeks’. Toshiba, of course, maintains that no decision has been made:
Officially, no decision has been made, insists Jodi Sally, vp of marketing for Toshiba America Consumer Products. “Based on its technological advancements, we continue to believe HD DVD is the best format for consumers, given the value and consistent quality inherent in our player offerings,” she said.
But she hinted that something’s in the air. “Given the market developments in the past month,” she said, “Toshiba will continue to study the market impact and the value proposition for consumers, particularly in light of our recent price reductions on all HD DVD players.”
They also report that, for the week ending 2/10, BD took 81% of disc sales to HD DVD’s 19%. That would be a large backslide for HD DVD from the previous week’s 74:26 split, almost back to the 1/27 82:18 split. And this with heavy discounting on HD DVD players, a Super Bowl ad that reportedly cost Toshiba $2.7 million, and a number of concurrent promotions on both players and media. They also caught a few Blu studio converts that I’d missed:
Blu-ray support among independents is rising. ADV Films, Tai Seng Entertainment, Topics Entertainment and National Geographic have all confirmed they are going Blu-ray exclusive, while more than one indie that was releasing titles just on HD DVD, including Surround Records and Opus Arte, will now offer Blu-ray as well.
This is still firmly in the rumor category, but it really seems inevitable. Toshiba cannot continue to bleed red ink on every HD DVD player they sell. Their deep price cuts were also deep cuts to the corporate wrist. A desperate cry for attention – but one that doesn’t appear to have worked. The only upside could be clearing out stock from their warehouses so they aren’t stuck with too many units when they finally announce that HD DVD is dead.
Picked up from High-Def Digest.