On our last trip to Fry's I was shocked and amazed to see a considerable inventory of HD-DVD media still on the shelves. Not only was there a great selection but the prices were good. Apparently this phenomenon is not…
I hate to admit this, but on December 24th my wife and I went to Best Buy looking for a last minute gift. We decided that her younger brother needed a Tivo. Ours is a three Tivo household, although only TivoHD sees any real use these days. One you get used to having a DVR you want one on every TV, and radio too for that matter.
Though we’d had two SD Tivo units for years when we bought or HDTV we initially got the Time Warner HD-DVR instead of Tivo Series 3. The Tivo Series 3 units were $800 at the time, more than we were willing to pay. That experience was enlightening, like stepping back into the dark ages. What crappy menus, and basically no intelligence at all in the software. The CableCo DVR was simply dreadful.
It’s been very frustrating dealing with the utility companies with respect to restoring service in the post-Ike period. At issue is their inability to get and redistribute information about who’s on, who’s not, and routine progress reports. Today for a short while my focus turned to Comcast as our cable tv and cable modem service remains down.
Just poking around this afternoon I found this which says that Amazon is definitely working on an HD version of their Unbox movie download service. This service is operated in partnership with Tivo. The user interface is very nicely integrated into the Tivo menus. My wife likes it a lot.
They suspect that the new service will be based upon H.264 compression. That’s about the only real option around.
Neither the company nor its customers will have unlimited bandwidth so older compression schemes would be impractical. Newer compression schemes would require that Amazon encode the content themselves. Better that they settle on H.264 which is what Apple’s iTunes uses amongst others.
It certainly appears that HD-DVD lost. But it also appears that Blu-Ray did not win. Yes, this was a classic lose-lose situation. For all it’s back room dealing Sony may blow this in the end.
Blu-Ray sales peaked for a few weeks in January but have since slumped. Consumers just may not see value in the price of the players or the media. Ars Technica has the details.
Wait, the price of Blu-Ray players has actually been on the rise since Toshiba conceded the battle! Even I, who still has a first generation Toshiba HD-XA1 HD-DVD player, won’t be buying a Blu-Ray player any time soon. They’re just too expensive.
Alec Saunders (a fellow Canuck) has an interesting observation about Toshiba and HD-DVD. IMHO, Toshiba’s comment doesn’t take into consideration Blu-Ray. Not making that statement is political face-saving on their part. Alec argues that they need to move the entire…