New Drive from Philps Can Play CDs, DVDs, BDs. Royal Philips Electronics Tuesday said it would showcase the world's first commercial optical drive that can play compact discs, digital video discs and blu-ray discs at Consumer Electronics show in Las Vegas, Nevada later during the week. The drive, that can read, record and re-write CDs and DVDs as well as play Blu-Ray discs, will be demonstrated during the CES show in the USA, but will only hit the market in the second half of the year, as expected.
Furthermore, the drive is unlikely to be in mass demand until sometime in 2006, when film studios release their movies on Blu-Ray discs. Philips' new optical drive features three types of lasers, including one so-called blue-laser that has shorter wave-length allowing to read physically smaller bits of information. Blu-ray, also known as Blu-ray Disc (BD) is the name of a next-generation optical disc format jointly developed by thirteen leading consumer electronics and PC companies, such as Dell, Hitachi, HP, LG, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, TDK and Thomson.
News source: X-bit labs