Planet Chooses Blu-ray, Beats Us Why!

I find it fascinating the way everybody just decided, almost literally overnight, in an amazing demonstration of human flock behaviour, that HD-DVD is dead. Sometime after the birth of 2008, when Warner Bros. decided to support Blu-ray exclusively, a chain reaction started that has resulted not only in HD-DVD market share being decimated, but in almost everybody I know — via Bell Telephone, Gmail, Facebook Posted Item, and Personal Face-to-Face Audio Exchange — relaying to me the same message: 'Blu-ray wins.'

I've heard this message before. Back in August of last year, when, conversely, Paramount decided to support HD-DVD exclusively, every HD-DVD owner was saying, of course ... 'HD-DVD wins!'

This time was different. This time, every tech-savvy individual I know, whatever their former allegiance (except Toshiba itself), was towing the same line. The war was over. Happy about it or not, Blu-ray shall reign. But here's the weird part. If you ask them, they've all got different reasons, and yet they all seem to have made the decision at the same time.

For some it was the Warner Bros. defection. For others, the change in sales figures (which followed immediately upon news of the defection). Later on, even better reasons became available, like Netflix and Wal-Mart dropping HD-DVD (which followed upon the sales figures). Finally, the widespread rumours of Toshiba's throwing in the towel have come swooping in to pick over the retail-ravaged bones.

For no particularly great technological reason, seemingly inconclusive evidence (let's call it The Warner Event) has sent a whole lot of free individuals all careening in the same direction, largely as a result of cues they gave each other. And this virally replicated speculation of where the centre of gravity should be, became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Maybe Reuters captured it best with their short synopsis of the Netflix reasoning:

Four out of six major Hollywood studios have recently decided to publish high-definition DVDs only using Blu-ray. Netflix said that with such a clear signal from the industry, it will only buy Blu-ray discs going forward and will phase out stock of HD DVD by about the end of the year.
Four out of six. A 'clear signal'. Flock much?
  • UPDATE 08/02/19: Toshiba has confirmed the rumours: they are abandoning their own format. I consider this a side issue to this article, which is not about whether HD-DVD will die, but about why.

3 comments:

discoveryandconquest said...

FYI - as I view this post, the google adwords at the bottom promote:
1) Divorced and Broke (some kind of financial security thing??), and:
2) Buy Blu-Ray Discs

:)

discoveryandconquest said...

it just occurred to me that google adwords are generated by keywords...*duh*

:o

Man said...

Yeah, the ads Google finds 'relevant' are a source of constant amusement. They seem to love placing 'How I lost 55 pounds' on this blog, beats me what they feel is relevant about it. Perhaps I should take a hint? 8)

Post a Comment