'Universal' Next-Gen DVD Players On Way

The missing consumer link in the move to HDTV is a universal DVD player that would accommodate both the new HD DVD and Blue-ray formats. Such a player could be coming soon, thanks to Broadcom Corp., which on Thursday unveiled a system-on-a-chip (SoC) solution that aims to be a foundation for companies looking to build dual-format player.

The Broadcom single-chip BCM7440 Blue-ray/HD DVD SoC features a software stack complaint with both of the warring DVD specifications. Will there be a universal player, Doug Grearson, Broadcom senior marketing manager, was asked. "The short answer is, absolutely," Grearson said. "It helps that the two formats are fairly close to begin with. Once you can read the disks you have reduced it to reading bitstreams."

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