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Nielsen: Sales at 85% Blu-ray and 15% HD DVD for Last Week

We all knew the Warner announcement would do a lot of damage, and now the statistics to back up those predictions are here. According to the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales numbers for last week, the top 10 high-definition disc sellers are all Blu-ray Disc releases. More importantly, net HD DVD sales constituted only 15% of HD disc sales last week and the top HD DVD seller, "The Kingdom," sold a meagre 10% of what the top Blu-ray Disc release, "3:10 to Yuma", managed to sell. Of course, this can actually be seen as a success for HD DVD. The format was pronounced dead by many, and yet it’s still alive and kicking.

On the other hand, reports are surfacing that in Japan, Blu-Ray accounted for 90% of next-generation DVD recorder sales from October to December. It’s quite obvious that Toshiba needs to get a studio back on its side quickly, or it will really be over. Sure, Toshiba slashed the prices for its HD DVD players recently, but that isn’t enough to turn the tide since the magic sub-$100 price point is not present. Apple didn’t make the rumoured Blu-ray announcement at Macworld 2008, so sales are still a direct result of Warner’s switch and only a headline equal or greater can truly deter them.

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