D-Day in the Format Wars

For the last few years, the competing high-def DVD groups have been at a standoff. Sony’s Blu-Ray standard has had the Playstation 3 behind it, as well as Fox, Disney, and Sony’s Columbia and MGM subsidiaries. Toshiba’s HD-DVD standard has the xBox 360 in its camp, as well as Paramount and Universal Studios.

Warner Bros had a foot in both camps - until today. Despite denying it two weeks ago, Warner will start releasing its movies exclusively on Blu-Ray. The HD-DVD camp is “particularly disappointed”, because this gives Blu-Ray a significant advantage in studio support. And Blu-Ray has a huge install base advantage thanks to the PS3 - so this could be the beginning of the end of the second format war. (If you were looking for an excuse to buy a PS3, this is it.)

It’s been nearly twenty years since Sony’s Betamax lost the first format war, and they’ve lost badly with MiniDisc and Memory Stick as well. It’s about time Sony won a round.