Blu-ray Disc Specification Change Threatens Current Players

Dear Mr. Early Adopter, start crying. The Blu-ray Disc Association has mandated that all players of the format released after October 31 must support BD Java which is currently not standard for today's hardware. All players released after October 31 must also hold a minimum 256MB of persistent memory storage. Those with network options will have to have 1GB of memory to support Web downloads. The main problem lies, however, with BD Java - a programming language for Blu-ray Disc media used mainly to deliver picture-in-picture for in-movie commentary and special features. "Blu-ray player requirements and BD-Java specifications have been gradually changed over and over again, which has caused a good amount of grief for player manufacturers. The new specification and requirements will ensure that all Blu-ray players manufactured past October will be able to support the full range of BD-Java capabilities, including picture in picture and more," said optical storage analyst Wesley Novack.

Owners of current Blu-ray Disc players should rest assured that playback of Blu-ray movies will still be possible, only the BD Java-specific features will be unavailable. Unlike the HD DVD standard, Blu-ray players are not required to have Ethernet ports for firmware updates. Blu-ray machines with upgradable firmware will likely have a greater chance of conforming to the mandated format this fall. Only a couple Blu-ray movies feature picture-in-picture commentaries, those titles being Descent and Crank, though they do so without BD Java. Cleverly, and perhaps inelegantly, two complete versions of the movie are stored on a 50GB Blu-ray disc: one version contains the normal version of the film, while the second one features the picture-in-picture commentary hard-encoded on top of the film.

News source: DailyTech

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The difference here is that all Blu-ray players will still be able to play the movies themselves properly.

SOME may or may not play all the special interactive features.

The sky is NOT falling.

PeterTHX said,
The difference here is that all Blu-ray players will still be able to play the movies themselves properly.

SOME may or may not play all the special interactive features.

Ummm...that's almost exactly what happened with The Matrix.

I fail to see the difference you point out.

And maybe it's not YOUR sky that is falling, but ask that chick standing next to you, m'kay?

No, it's NOT what happened with "The Matrix".

It used seamless branching for the "follow the white rabbit" feature which locked up many DVD players. In seamless branching 2 different versions are on the same stream, so playing the film proper is affected.

god i wish blu-ray would lose studios like the ps3 is losing exclusives :P it would really help out my hd-dvd collection

I doubt anything bad happening to BD will change things. BDs line shelves along with the PS3. BD is constantly being talked about as technically superior. I haven't seen the 360 HDDVD player anywhere. I once saw a shelf of HDDVDs.

Nobody wants to talk about why HDDVD is better. And the main reason is to push the PS3. PS3 is damn expensive, so to justify the price, shops heavily push BD. X360 is selling alright, and retailers don't see much need to push HDDVD.

Oh, and I haven't seen a singly DVD/HDDVD hybrid yet...

And Universal has announced they are discontinuing a number of combo discs due to production issues/costs, consumer issues, etc. Titles like "Army of Darkness", "Unleashed" and a few others will be reissued as HD DVD only discs.

Those with network options will have to have 1GB of memory to support Web downloads.

I'm surprised no one has brought this up. since the Ps3 has network options, doesn't that mean it'll be required to have 1gb of memory?

Thats kinds implemented into the ps3 so its not s atdna lone dvd player... bout out of the 60gb or what ever u get on your ps3... do u actually think u get the full 60gb??? after all the patches, web page stuff and all the other thingos... so yeah... just more stuff to blow that 60gb away...

lol it's meaning memory as in storage space not RAM ps3 can do it fine. read rest of article.

Ps3 has 60GB of room for "Web downloads" even though it may only be logically 54GB who's complaining ? 5GB off advertisement because they round it for consumers sake. plus if 60GB is nothing to you and you can fill it up in 3 minutes just buy a larger hard drive simple.

They would easily be able to to include firmware updates on the Blu-ray movies themselves if this really became an issue.

What is up with all you Sony and blu-ray bashers. I like both formats. I could care less about some stupid extras on blu-ray or hd-dvd. I have never watched them on dvds and don't watch them now with blu-ray or hd-dvd. All these extras are a complete waste IMO. Studios should spend more time making better movies and forget about all these extras.
To clarify the PS3 issue with memory for the java. The hard drive will be more than capable in handling the memory for the new standard.

exactly my point - why do you want popup rubbish while trying to watch a movie who cares. but simply put this is neowin we bash anything that says otherwise even with no logic behind it because we can.

Lmao right.

Well, some people want PIP extras and some people like to have 25GB filled with commentaries. A choice and a very important one in some people's mind. There. Happy now?

This "standard" is going to die quick if they keep changing it. Most people don't upgrade their VCR's and DVD players yearly like a PC.

Just for these people who say interactive options and PiP is stupid..

By listening to you people, we would still be on plain HTML, boring web sites on the internet now..No flash interactive stuff, no video nothing..

Just because the regular DVD standard was able just to show simple additional features on a DVD doesn't mean that HD-DVD interactive experience won't give you spectacular interactivity with the movie.

For a lot of movies that I loved, I wanted more info, how it was made, the ideas behind the movie, the history of the characters. With interactive layers of hi-def movies you will be able to watch the movie normally and then have these play a significant role in backstage story telling.

Just imagine, having an interactive timeline for 300 movie, with information about Leonidas king, the Spartans, how they generated the battles with computers, while you watch the final scene you actually see how they did it in one part of the screen etc etc..

You guys are pretty shallow, if everything was up to you we would be still watching VHS and using BBS instead of internet because hey you don't really need it..you can chat on BBS boards like you can on forums today.

Pretty narrowminded.

And if this sounds awesome you will realize how HD-DVD is already starting to deliver on that promise..just imagine, buying a HD_DVD movie and watching it with special features and encyclopedias and so on, and then 3 months down the road, the publisher incorporates more content that you can download and view from the web..how cool is that..

So saying BD not having properly implement their bad choice in interactivity (Java) is justifying Sony's everlasting FU approach to everyone (consumers, developers etc)

I can guarantuee you that a lot of hardware manufacturers are scratching their heads now and are furious because of this...they LOST money and customers because of this.

Well said man. :)

But hey, you have to defend your format somehow, right? Even if it's trying to not care that you, as a consumer, are being screwed.

For a lot of movies that I loved, I wanted more info, how it was made, the ideas behind the movie, the history of the characters. With interactive layers of hi-def movies you will be able to watch the movie normally and then have these play a significant role in backstage story telling.

Just imagine, having an interactive timeline for 300 movie, with information about Leonidas king, the Spartans, how they generated the battles with computers, while you watch the final scene you actually see how they did it in one part of the screen etc etc..

Current BD Java already does that. They also have the space to include many documentaries on the subject, usually in full 1080p.

And if this sounds awesome you will realize how HD-DVD is already starting to deliver on that promise..just imagine, buying a HD_DVD movie and watching it with special features and encyclopedias and so on, and then 3 months down the road, the publisher incorporates more content that you can download and view from the web..how cool is that..

Or getting it when you buy the BD disc because the it already had plenty of room.

Or not being able to because you, like most consumers, don't have ethernet in the living room!

So saying BD not having properly implement their bad choice in interactivity (Java) is justifying Sony's everlasting FU approach to everyone (consumers, developers etc)

You leave out that there is CHOICE with Blu-ray. Not MONOPOLY like with Toshiba. (Blu-ray companies like Panasonic are laughing at your ignorance)
If you knew anything about software development you'd know the BD Java is much more flexible and programmable, with room to grow. HDi is already tapped out.

Oh, and the triple layer 51GB disc you tout? How about that rendering ALL existing HD DVD players obsolete so they can't even play those discs at all?! Not that it will actually ever come out anyway.

I can guarantuee you that a lot of hardware manufacturers are scratching their heads now and are furious because of this...they LOST money and customers because of this.

And I can guarantee that they are not. They know full well about this. That's why every player, from the earliest Samsung to the latest is firmware updateable. Panasonic, Pioneer, Samsung, Philips, etc aren't losing sleep over what some uniformed internet trolls are spewing on some tech site. Did you know no first gen DVD players supported DTS? That layer changes caused player crashes? Support for CD-R/DVD-R, SACD, DVD-Audio, etc ALL CAME IN SUBSEQUENT GENERATIONS. Of course you'd actually have to know electronics history to be aware of this.

I wonder if everytime there is a new workaround this ppl will force to update and make you pay the "upgrade". Seems everything now is in the hand of corporations and they can do whatever they want. This is because the ppl is plain stupid. Shouldnt buy this "new" super "hight" resolusion at all.

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