Major publishers drop Sony-backed disc as optical format war intensifies

Paramount and Dreamworks drop Blu-ray support

The HD-DVD / Blu-ray war has taken another bizarre turn with film production companies Paramount and animation specialists Dreamworks announcing that they will drop Blu-ray disks from their future production plans. The two companies now plan to work only with HD-DVD, which strangely enough is widely reported to be the underdog in the format war.

Until now, Paramount has sold disks of both formats, yet has now decided it best to work exclusively with HD-DVD after deciding it was more friendly to their budget and better quality
President of Paramount Home Entertainment, Kelley Avery, told Reuters: "This has been the biggest summer on record for movies, it will be the biggest fourth quarter for popular movies for consumers. At the same time, we have HD DVD players that are truly affordable."

The competition so far has placed Blu-ray sales in first place while HD-DVD sales have been inconsistent. HD DVD could be about to turn the tables with lower cost players. In the US the lowest cost HD DVD player retails at $299 and when compared with the lowest cost Blu-ray, which retails at $499, it is increasingly evident why many companies are turning their attention to HD.

The two formats launched last year and Blu-ray immediately outsold HD at a rate of two to one in the first half of 2007. According to Home Media Research, through July, 2.2 million Blu-ray units were sold, while 1.5 million HD DVD units were sold.

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