Philips Consumer Electronics has thrown its full support behind the Blu-ray high-definition DVD format, adding a new Blu-ray DVD player and declaring the format to be the future of high-definition DVD storage.
The BDP7200 DVD comes at a time when demand for movies on Blu-ray discs are growing, said Stewart Muller, senior vice president of Philips' consumer lifestyle division.
With major studios starting to put their weight behind Blu-ray, and Blockbuster offering only Blu-ray DVDs for rental, the format is in a position to take over the market for high-definition DVD storage, Muller said. Studios deliver movies every day and that should help breed more Blu-ray hardware, Muller said.
"The future is nothing but Blu," Muller said.
Blu-ray recently has witnessed a spate of victories in its fight with the rival HD DVD format to gain supremacy as the high-definition disc format for the movie, gaming and music industries. The move away from HD DVD makes Philips the latest company to jump on the Blu-ray bandwagon. Warner Bros., which until recently released DVDs on both of the rival formats, last week dropped its support for HD DVD to exclusively back Blu-ray.
Both movie studios and consumer electronic companies have been locked in a battle over the formats, with Sony, Panasonic and Samsung supporting Blu-ray, and Toshiba, Microsoft and Intel supporting HD DVD.
The Blu-ray Disc BDP7200 player includes technology called BD-Java, which allows users to take advantage of the interactive features on a disc when a movie is playing, including enabling pop-up menus, director's commentary and bonus material.
The player plays images at full HD resolution of 1080p and supports HDMI to receive high-definition audio and video. A remote control included with the disc player uses one button to control the connected television and audio-visual components, Philips said in a release.
The Blu-ray Disc player will be available for US$349 from April this year.