Archive for December, 2009

Blu-ray Disc Association Announces Final 3D Specification

“Blu-ray 3D” Expected to Reach Consumers in 2010

The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) has announced the finalization and release of the “Blu-ray 3D” specification.  This highly anticipated specification means that the 3D experience will no longer be exclusive to the big screen.  Now consumers can enjoy this from the comfort of their own living rooms on Blu-ray Disc.

Technologically, the specification has various advantages. It allows every Blu-ray 3D player and movie to deliver Full HD 1080p resolution to each eye, thereby maintaining the industry leading image quality to which Blu-ray Disc viewers are accustomed.  Moreover, the specification is display agnostic, meaning that Blu-ray 3D products will deliver the 3D image to any compatible 3D display, regardless of whether that display uses LCD, Plasma or other technology. The specification has been designed so that Sony PlayStation3 game consoles will be able to play 3D Blu-ray content, and it also allows 2D playback of 3D discs in existing BD players.

“Throughout this year, moviegoers have shown an overwhelming preference for 3D when presented with the option to see a theatrical release in either 3D or 2D.” Victor Matsuda, chairman, BDA Global Promotions Committee

The completed specification will be available shortly and the BDA is confident it will prove a success.  Victor Matsuda, global chairman of BDA Promotions Committee said: “We think the broad and rapid acceptance Blu-ray Disc already enjoys with consumers will be a factor in accelerating the uptake of 3D in the home.” Benn Carr, chairman, BDA 3D Task Force, added: “From a technological perspective, it is simply the best available platform for bringing 3D into the home. The disc capacity and bit rates Blu-ray Disc provides enable us to deliver 3D in Full HD 1080p high definition resolution.”

To read more about the Blu-ray 3D specification click here to view the full release.

Germany embraces Blu-ray

As was noted in last month’s Futuresource report, the German Blu-ray Disc market is among the strongest in Europe.

The Futuresource statistics have been backed up by market insight from the GfK Consumer Panel, which found that sales in the first three quarters were quadruple that of the same period in 2008. Part of that growth can be attributed to the wide range of BD players (now over 150 models) on the market.

With the Christmas period now underway, sales are predicted to rise further as retailers continue to push the format and prices of both players and discs fall. Festive promotions, including ones like this from supermarket chain ALDI, are increasingly offering Profile 2.0 players at prices close to €100, with many discs available for less than €15.

With HD TV broadcasts also set to increase in Germany in 2010, the success of high definition in the country looks assured.

Thanksgiving brings US BD boost

Although this is the BDA’s European blog, recent sales figures from the US warrant some attention.

The Friday following Thanksgiving, known as ‘Black Friday’ in the US, is traditionally one of the biggest shopping days of the year. Retailers across the country open early and often offer great value deals to mark the start of the Christmas shopping season.

This year, Blu-ray has been one of the Black Friday success stories, with media outlets including The Washington Post and PC World reporting a massive surge in sales. According to Home Media Research, revenue from sales of Blu-ray Discs for the week ending November 29 was $69.06 million – a huge increase of 224 percent over the same period in 2008.

With more and more BD players entering the US market priced around the $100 mark, and prices of discs also falling, the future looks bright for the format.

Blu-ray Disc Reporter

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