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Most Buyers Sit Out Hi-Def DVD War

A little more than 18 months after their introduction, neither of the high-definition DVD formats has a clear advantage, either in terms of technology, number of movies or, increasingly, the price of the equipment. According to data from Adams Media Research, 578,000 HD DVDs, developed by Toshiba, and 370,000 Blu-ray machines, from Sony, will be sold by the end of this year.

The winner of the format wars could be determined by which company has the most content, in the same way the VHS-Betamax VCR war was decided. But both formats offer about 400 movies.

The two camps are victims of their own earlier success with DVD. The standard DVDs offered a quantum leap in quality from the picture and sound of VHS videotape, and for many that was more than adequate. In addition, DVD players that can convert images to near high-definition quality can be found for under $100, hundreds less than a true high-definition DVD player, further reducing the urgency to upgrade to one of the new formats.



Read the whole story at The New York Times »

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