Blu-Ray, I hardly know ye

Poor consumer education could be Blu-ray's downfall in the market

There was a time when it looked like HD-DVD would be winner in the battle to bring high-definition to computers and video players. Then the momentum suddenly swung to a competing standard called Blu-ray. Now, it looks like Blu-Ray is in trouble, but not from HD-DVD.

Let me make a confession: I've written about this stuff for 25 years and cannot, off the top of my head, recite the differences between the formats. Nor can most people, for whom the whole Blu-ray "thing" seems to be a snore.

In fact, a Harris Interactive Poll (PDF) found that 93 percent of those surveyed have no interest in purchasing a Blu-Ray DVD player, despite HDTV ownership rising to 47 percent, up from 35 percent a year ago.

What's the matter?

Blu-ray vs. HD-DVD has confused potential customers, which is a sure way to freeze the market. But, there is also a concurrent move away from DVD as a content delivery mechanism.

"Blu-ray also faces competition from alternative technologies such as cable, satellite, and the Internet," said Milton Ellis, Vice President and Senior Consultant, Harris Interactive Technology, Media, and Telecom Practice. "Consumers today can easily watch high definition TV channels or use the Internet or video-on-demand to access high definition movies.

"In the near future, access to high definition movies may be a download or streaming delivery of one's favorite movies to a home media server that eliminates the need for a Blu-ray player and Blu-ray disc. One thing is for sure, the market will be highly competitive, and consumers will have a wide variety of choices for their entertainment experience."

My guess is that over time most of us will end up with Blu-ray, because it comes as part of whatever we purchase next, be it a computer or video player.

David Coursey happily admits to not owning a HDTV. He tweets as techinciter and can be reached via e-mail using the form at www.coursey.com/contact.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags blu-rayHD DVD

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

David Coursey

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Imou: At home with security

Modern living is all about functionality and security for everybody from the very young to the very old. With Imou anybody can enjoy smart life – the solution is at their fingertips.

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?