Still a 'Bag of Hurt?'

Apple has not had it very easy when trying to get their hands on Blu-Ray technology; even if they really, really wanted to at its release.

Firstly, an early on licensing issue with Sony, Panasonic and Phillips halted any possibility of the introduction of this technology into any other companies, let alone Apple. In reaction to this Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple famously spoke of Blu-Ray as a 'bag of hurt' last year.

Whilst this issue was being dealt with, Jobs was eager to see how Blu-Ray took off in the market, it was an expensive technology initially and Jobs seemed unconvinced that it was something for the Apple consumer. Since Blu-Ray's release, the market has settled a little and it seems to be integrating itself well. New rumours that Microsoft's latest Xbox offering may have the technology in it have certainly given Blu-Ray a boost.

In terms of licensing issues, Since Blu-Ray's release a joint announcement has been made between Sony, Panasonic and Phillips stating that other companies wishing to get their hands on this technology will now have a cheaper, and simpler licensing process to undergo. This was positive news for companies like Apple, wishing to get their hands on the technology. However, Apple had another niggling issue to deal with when it came to making a decision to take on Blu-Ray.

Apple provide an iTunes based movie rentals and downloads service. This actively competes with Blu-Ray, so if Apple is eager for its users to take a step forward by using digital media, is it a regression to consider using disk based media? Should the rumours be true and Apple are planning to start introducing Blu-Ray, (even just as an optional extra) its certainly a good sign that they are offering their users a choice of both formats.

With this in mind, I can tell you that some screen shots of the new iTunes 8.2 have just been leaked. These state that the new iTunes will support Blu-Ray technology. Perhaps this is a sign that Apple are indeed making the Blu-Ray leap and redying their new machines to be compatible? To see if I could find out more, I got in touch with the Apple PR people and they politely said that they couldn't comment.

I guess the real question is, will Blu-Ray be something welcomed by Apple users? I think I'll welcome it.

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30 Comments

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I dunno, I don't really care for Blu-ray anymore. :S The price is still steep for the recordable media, and as for watching movies, those files reside on my hard drive instead, or on DVD's which I think is good enough for upscaling DVD players. Large hard drive backups? Well, to other hard drives of course. That's far more economic.

Sure, I'm a Mac user, so maybe I should tell that for "full disclosure", but I would have said this if my PC wouldn't have a Blu-ray drive too. It's just not something I'm looking for, and sure as hell not something I want to pay more for.

"an expensive technology initially and Jobs seemed unconvinced that it was something for the Apple consumer"

Since when has something being expensive been a problem for the Apple consumer

Apple provide an iTunes based movie rentals and downloads service. This actively competes with Blu-Ray [...]

While true, the selection is not 1:1 thus on an individual title's format availability there might not be any competition. There is also medium preferences. Some people prefer physical mediums to digital ones and vice versa. I really don't think this will have much of an impact on the consumption of either format. I rent and buy on a wide variety of formats myself.

I hate these new technologies. HDCP is a joke. People can straight up rip high def content. There are some nice non TN monitors that do not support HDCP and that ticks me off.

Intelman said,
I hate these new technologies. HDCP is a joke. People can straight up rip high def content. There are some nice non TN monitors that do not support HDCP and that ticks me off.


HDCP is not just about Blu-ray; DVD software (on Windows and OS X at least) also supports HDCP (though it's hard to require it there due to analog monitors still being available). HDCP's big issue is with HDMI (which includes it); therefore anything that has incomplete compliance with or breaks HDCP is going to have issues (such as extenders and HDMI hubs/switchboxes). Very few new PC FP displays (TN or non) don't support HDCP (in fact I know of NO PC display between 17" and 30" that doesn't support HDCP over their digital inputs); even more telling is that HDCP-compliant graphics cards are actually *standard* in every price range and across every graphical bus; it's not just a high-end spec anymore.

robotfood said,
"it was an expensive technology initially and Jobs seemed unconvinced that it was something for the Apple consumer"

lulz


Yep. Apple and "expensive technology"? No way!

They aren't commenting because this article is a bag of bunk.

Apple was part of the BDA from the very beginning. Everyone was wondering for a long time when they'd launch a product, even to the point of speculation that Apple would introduce a new Superdrive with BD capability in 2006, beating Dell and HP.

That never materialized.

Soon it became apparent that Apple was giving token support because Microsoft had thrown their weight behind HD DVD and HDi. They were more interested in downloads with AppleTV.

Meanwhile AppleTV hasn't set the electronics world on fire and just about all the major Blu-ray Disc authoring programs are on Windows platforms.

This article smacks of Mac Apologist.

According to the link in the article, Jobs said "we're waiting till things settle down and Blu-ray takes off in the marketplace."

Perhaps Apple is looking at Blu-ray the same way Sony is approaching console gaming: a Ten-Year plan.

I got in touch with the Apple PR people and they...said that they couldn't comment
No official announcement = no comment. Not sure why they even have a PR department.

If you happen to own a Mac Pro there are Bue-ray dives already available, not sure if there's anything for other Macs.

For the price, you can't beat the PC in the Blu-ray department. The cost of the Mac Pro plus the BD drive... a little high.

I still don't quite understand the hold up. Are the licensing issues they've had been on the hardware or software (i.e. player) side? HP have had machines (inc notebooks) with Blu-ray drives for a some time.

I would love to see a Blu-ray drive in a future Macbook Pro. My only Blu-ray capable device right now is the PS3 which is great but, it would be nice to be able to watch Blu-rays on my laptop while I am at/traveling to a relatives house too.

I also have a gripe about the incorrect grammar used in this, and many other news postings on Neowin. Apple is a single entity therefore the first sentence of this posting should've been like this "Apple hasn't had it very easy when it came to..."
I really wish people could understand how it works....

rannan said,
I also have a gripe about the incorrect grammar used in this, and many other news postings on Neowin. Apple is a single entity therefore the first sentence of this posting should've been like this "Apple hasn't had it very easy when it came to..."
I really wish people could understand how it works.... :(

Could be referring to the collective of people who work at Apple as Apple Since they are the people who haven't had it easy

Pixil Eyes said,
95% of people really just don't care.

This is the problem with our education system. Hell, why even bother going to school?

Anyway, thanks for correcting the article, Elliot.

rob.derosa said,
Could be referring to the collective of people who work at Apple as Apple Since they are the people who haven't had it easy :p


The collective? As in the single collective? Yeeeeah. See, this is where the confusion comes in. British English uses plural conjugation and then explains it singularly.

/they used to say zee for 'z', too
//American English sure is similar to British English a few centuries ago
///but noooo, keep saying we bastardized it

dead.cell said,
This is the problem with our education system. Hell, why even bother going to school?

Anyway, thanks for correcting the article, Elliot. :)

Indifference to incorrect spelling of marketing terms which are themselves comprised of incorrect spellings of actual words is an indictment on our education system??

Here's what he said:

Hey look at me I want to be important. I'll point out every little thing wrong in grammar.

He obviously has a problem with people suggesting proper use of spelling and grammar, regardless of what it is the author is trying to spell. That was what I was addressing.

geoken said,

Indifference to incorrect spelling of marketing terms which are themselves comprised of incorrect spellings of actual words is an indictment on our education system??

You're more than welcome!

For future reference, see "Report a Problem" at the top of each news post. No need to make a comment for each little issue

rannan said,
I also have a gripe about the incorrect grammar used in this, and many other news postings on Neowin. Apple is a single entity therefore the first sentence of this posting should've been like this "Apple hasn't had it very easy when it came to..."
I really wish people could understand how it works.... :(

Not trying to be funny, but I always learn something new from you commenters! =P