Monday, January 14, 2008

Bye Bye HD DVD

I have to admit that I was actually angry when I heard of HD DVD and Blu-ray. I already spent, no I wasted, thousands of dollars on DVDs. So now I'm thinking that I would have to replace my DVDs. I did not want to accept this thought.
I have to say that technology has to have enough of an advantage to make people upgrade. When I got a CD player in 1990, I knew that not only would I hear music with a clearer sound, but unlike cassettes, I could go right to the correct song. I remember Ozzy Osbourne's song Crazy Train was the second song on the album Blizzard of Oz. I had to forward and rewind to hear it again. When I got my CD player, that problem was solved.
When I got my first DVD player, I now had the ability to see more than just the movie. I could hear director and actor commentary. I could go right to deleted scenes or bloopers.
I also enjoyed seeing films with better picture and sound.
Blu-ray and HD DVD have been slow to catch on because the only advantages they bring are better picture and sound than normal DVDs. Not as many new changes than we found when we switched to DVDs.
Advances in picture or sound can only do so much to grab mainstream attention. Remember Super Audio CDs. They did not catch on. They have not disappeared, but just fill a really small section of retail stores. While CDs had many advantages over cassettes, Super Audio CDs do not have enough advantages over normal CDs to make people convert to a new format.
I have to admit that people also hate to have to replace their collections.
But let's say that you do want to upgrade your movie collection to have better picture and sound. With both HD DVD and Blu-ray, you will find improvements. But the difference.....
Blu-ray actually is more advanced than HD DVD. This means that HD DVD is inferior to Blu-ray. If you wanted improvement, why would you choose the inferior product?
I would like to say that I knew that one product would die, but I would be lying. I predicted that one would die. The consumer does not like to be confused. With multiple formats out, the consumer has to do research to know which one is better. People prefer easier choices.
Warner Brothers and Paramount just made the choice easier by not releasing movies on HD DVD. I think that the sooner HD DVD dies, the sooner people will buy Blu-ray players.
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