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Blu-ray is dead

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Roadrunna    38

I don't own a HDTV or a Blu-ray player but articles like this don't exactly help my enthusiasm for it either. Probably just FUD but what do you guys think.

Blu-ray is in a death spiral. 12 months from now Blu-ray will be a videophile niche, not a mass market product.

With only a 4% share of US movie disc sales and HD download capability arriving, the Blu-ray disc Association (BDA) is still smoking dope. Even $150 Blu-ray players won?t save it.

16 months ago I called the HD war for Blu-ray. My bad. Who dreamed they could both lose?

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

Delusional Sony exec Rick Clancy needs to put the crack pipe down and really look at the market dynamics.

In a nutshell: consumers drive the market and they don?t care about Blu-ray?s theoretical advantages. Especially during a world-wide recession.

Remember Betamax? SACD? Minidisk? Laser Disk? DVD-Audio? There are more losers than winners in consumer storage formats.

It?s all about volume. 8 months after Toshiba threw in the towel, Blu-ray still doesn?t have it.

The Blu-ray Disc Association doesn?t get it

$150 Blu-ray disc players are a good start, but it won?t take Blu-ray over the finish line. The BDA is stuck in the past with a flawed five-year-old strategy.

The original game plan

Two things killed the original strategy. First the fight with HD DVD stalled the industry for two years. Initial enthusiasm for high definition video on disk was squandered.

Second, the advent of low cost up-sampling DVD players dramatically cut the video quality advantage of Blu-ray DVDs. Suddenly, for $100, your average consumer can put good video on their HDTV using standard DVDs. When Blu-ray got started no one dreamed this would happen.

Piggies at the trough

The Blu-ray Disc Association hoped for a massive cash bonanza as millions of consumers discovered that standard DVDs looked awful on HDTV. To cash in they loaded Blu-ray licenses with costly fees. Blu-ray doesn?t just suck for consumers: small producers can?t afford it either.

According to Digital Content Producer Blu-ray doesn?t cut it for business:

Recordable discs don?t play reliably across the range of Blu-ray players - so you can?t do low-volume runs yourself.

Service bureau reproduction runs $20 per single layer disc in quantities of 300 or less.

Hollywood style printed/replicated Blu-ray discs are considerably cheaper once you reach the thousand unit quantity: just $3.50 per disc.

High-quality authoring programs like Sony Blu-print or Sonic Solutions Scenarist cost $40,000.

The Advanced Access Content System - the already hacked DRM - has a one-time fee of $3000 plus a per project cost of almost $1600 plus $.04 per disk. And who defines ?project??

Then the Blu-ray disc Association charges another $3000 annually to use their very exclusive - on 4% of all video disks! - logo.

That?s why you don?t see quirky indie flicks on Blu-ray. Small producers can?t afford it - even though they shoot in HDV and HD.

The Storage Bits take

Don?t expect Steve Jobs to budge from his ?bag of hurt? understatement. Or Final Cut Studio support for Blu-ray. I suspect that Jobs is using his Hollywood clout from his board seat on Disney and his control of iTunes to try to talk sense to the BDA.

But the BDA won?t budge. They, like so much of Hollywood, are stuck in the past.

A forward looking strategy would include:

Recognition that consumers don?t need Blu-ray. It is a nice-to-have and must be priced accordingly.

Accept the money spent on Blu-ray is gone and will never earn back the investment. Then you can begin thinking clearly about how to maximize Blu-ray penetration.

The average consumer will probably pay $50 more for a Blu-ray player that is competitive with the average up-sampling DVD player. Most of the current Blu-ray players are junk: slow, feature-poor and way over-priced.

Disk price margins can?t be higher than DVDs and probably should be less. The question the studios need to ask is: ?do we want to be selling disks in 5 years?? No? Then keep it up. Turn distribution over to your very good friends at Comcast, Apple and Time Warner. You?ll be like Procter & Gamble paying Safeway to stock your products.

Fire all the market research firms telling you how great it is going to be. They are playing you. Your #1 goal: market share. High volume is your only chance to earn your way out of this mess and keep some control of your distribution.

Time is short. Timid incrementalism will kill you.

Like Agent Smith delivering the bad news to a complacent cop: ?No, Lieutenant, your men are already dead.?

Source

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Coldgunner    12

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Have they looked at the release schedules? back catalogue titles are comign in thick and fast, as well as nearly every new dvd release has a BD release the same day.

Fail article

Just because it not biting DVD much, doesn't mean its gonna fail. for the first few years, VHS outsold DVD. Just history repeating itself.

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Snakehn    5

I always found ridiculous to pay $400 for a stupid blu-ray player.

bring on the HD downloads :) !!

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Ricardo Gil    0

Everyone can have an opinion.

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afusion    0

LMAO this would of made a cunning April fools.

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Ironman273    1,095
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Have they looked at the release schedules? back catalogue titles are comign in thick and fast, as well as nearly every new dvd release has a BD release the same day.

Fail article

Just because it not biting DVD much, doesn't mean its gonna fail. for the first few years, VHS outsold DVD. Just history repeating itself.

Just because something is released doesn't mean it will get bought. Have you looked at the sales numbers?

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Ambroos    801

If Blu-ray isn't next, then what is?

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Coldgunner    12
Just because something is released doesn't mean it will get bought. Have you looked at the sales numbers?

its because nearly everything plays dvd's. fast forward 6 years and I wouldn't be suprised to find a BD-ROM drive in everything.

Problem is, most people can't see the advantages of HD over SD until someone shows them. With VHS->DVD the difference was a little more clear.

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houlty    2

but i read somewhere that HD downloads aren't true HD. i'll try and find a link.

basically the resolution may be there (720/1080), but the bitrates are nothing like, meaning artifacting, especially during fast movement.

i dunno, i'm no expert. but then again neither is 99% of the population so if they see something saying HD, they won't be worried if its the low or high bitrate. meh...

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sundayx    127
I always found ridiculous to pay $400 for a stupid blu-ray player.

Some Samsung players are down to 1XX...

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stevember    138
If Blu-ray isn't next, then what is?

Downloads, USB Sticks, Memory Cards.

Discs are so inconvenient.

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Coldgunner    12
Downloads, USB Sticks, Memory Cards.

Discs are so inconvenient.

and spending hours downloading 15gb of video isn't?

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afusion    0
and spending hours downloading 15gb of video isn't?

Hopefully in the next 5 years that'll become more feasible :)

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MMaster23    0

No matter how much I love digital downloads and not having to get up from my lazy ass to switch discs, I still prefer to own a copy of my favorite movies in my hands.

I'm not anti-DRM but I just want to be sure that I have the copy .. and not the dgiital download service.

Rental on the other hand...

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Coldgunner    12
No matter how much I love digital downloads and not having to get up from my lazy ass to switch discs, I still prefer to own a copy of my favorite movies in my hands.

I'm not anti-DRM but I just want to be sure that I have the copy .. and not the dgiital download service.

Rental on the other hand...

I kinda like having a tangiable library. having everything on a HDD isnt quite the same.

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DaDude    46

I strongly disagree with that article. As more people are buying HDTVs, more people are starting to buy Blu-ray players because it's the only way you're going to watch true 1080p content. DVDs can only be upconverted and HD cables only shows 720p content to limit the bandwidth. Once February 2009 hits, trust me. I'll bet Blu-ray sales will skyrocket.

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afusion    0

It's ironic I buy $50-60 games (like 2 in a year) but I refuse to pay $40 for a new movie (on BD that is)

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coresx    41

Little bit over the top in the article but you never know.

HD on demand has a long way to go and won't take over solid media. Place for both but the latter will change to some form of flash storage if it gets cheap enough. For example, instead of retail stores we know today, they would be download stores. You walk in, stick your card in the machine, it gives you a copy on your flash card which you take home or to a friends and you copy it to your movie player or games machine. That's the only way I can see us moving away from disc media.

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afusion    0

Some people want to be the first and hopefully be right in their predictions when writing an article such as this. They think that's how reputation is earned and opportunities will come to them.

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sin-ergy    2

HD Downloads with most ISPs setting monthly caps? Uh, no thanks. I likes my blu-ray discs.

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Osiris    822

I think the clear point from all this is the difference between DVD > Bluray...I dont think too many ppl can either tell or actually give a toss...after seeing a few or watching a movie in DVD then bluray I can see the improvement but most ppl are just happy the prices of HDTV and large tvs in general has fallen and that with a dvd and a HTS and they are set. I dont think bluray will fail but they had better work on getting the cost of movies down...ppl will pay a cpl hundred maybe even a few hundred for a player but they wont fork out the cost when everything from rentals to purchasing the movies is so much more expensive.

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FlibbyFlobby    0

I don't see Blu-Ray getting beat by HD downloads any time soon in the UK. Our broadband speeds are mediocre compared to the rest of the world and our ISP's seems to be enforcing strict bandwidth caps.

Then there's the inevitable mish mash of service providers. If I got my HD downloaded movie download from service A, what happens when I move to service B? Can I keep my purchase? Will it contain DRM, or be in a format unique to each service? What happens if my hard disk dies, can I download my library again? How many times? Can I watch my movies around a friends?

With a physical BD disc I know it will work in any BD player. I know when I'm done with it I can sell it or lend it to friends or family. I know I can pick up a movie while I'm doing my shopping, then come home and watch it immediately. With a digital download I'd be waiting a while

But more importantly than any of this, which one willl look awesome on my book case? :p

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afusion    0

Not everyone is ready to trade up to blu ray

See the economy lately? :laugh:

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FlibbyFlobby    0
Not everyone is ready to trade up to blu ray

See the economy lately? :laugh:

Yes, because the economic downturn has stopped everyone purchasing things are that aren't essentials. :rolleyes:

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Michael1406    0

I still think tangible products have too much of an advantage to be beaten. Everyone else has pretty much said why, but I just thought I'd poke my head in the thread and say Blu-Ray is not dead.

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