After Years Of Talk, High-Def DVD Era Set For Soft Launch

“The battle between two formats seeking to become the high-definition successor to the DVD officially gets under way when Toshiba’s first HD DVD player hits the market April 18, at the same time as the first HD DVD movies arrive in stores.

Sony’s (NYSE:SNE – News) rival Blu-ray Disc is expected to follow two months later. Then it will be up to consumers to pick a winner. The face-off of HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc promises to be the biggest format war since VHS beat Betamax in the videocassette market in the 1980s.

Analysts say consumers’ choice likely will come down to content. Hollywood movie studios are split on the two formats, but more side with Blu-ray.

Still, HD DVD has some big studios in its camp. They include Time Warner’s (NYSE:TWX – News) Warner Home Video, Viacom’s (NYSE:VIA – News) Paramount Pictures Home Entertainment and General Electric’s (NYSE:GE – News) majority owned Universal Pictures.”source: ‘DittoIt’ 2006-03-19
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