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Microsoft: Blu-ray Is Dying
By Swanni

Washington, D.C. (September 22, 2010) -- Microsoft, which has long been on the opposite side of the Blu-ray high-def format, now is predicting that Blu-ray will soon die.

Microsoft was a strong supporter of the HD DVD high-def format which competed against Blu-ray until HD DVD sponsor Toshiba pulled the plug two years ago.

Since then, Microsoft has occasionally publicly flirted with the possibility of adding a Blu-ray drive to its entertainment/gaming console, the XBox 360.

But in an interview with the gaming site, XBox Achievements, Microsoft UK Box chief Stephen McGill says the company was right to keep Blu-ray on the sidelines. In time, he says, Blu-ray "is going to be passed by as a format."

McGill added: "People have moved through from DVDs to digital downloads and digital streaming...people now recognize what a smart decision it was to keep the (XBox 360) pricing low."

McGill was referring to Sony's decision to add a Blu-ray player to its PlayStation 3, which contributed to a higher unit price a few years ago.

Swanni Sez:

Microsoft has been wrong about Blu-ray before -- and it's wrong again now. (And I should add that, with the exception of the XBox 360, Microsoft has been remarkably wrong on the TV category, failing with such products as MSN TV and the Ultimate TV DVR.)

While consumer adoption of video streaming will slowly rise, it won't reach a majority of homes for some time. Most Americans are still uncomfortable with the concept of connecting Net-enabled TV set-tops to home networking systems (and/or wireless Internet services), which is required to watch video streaming at home.

Consequently, hard discs -- namely the Blu-ray high-def disc -- will be around for years to come. It's a format that people are comfortable with and you can't change that overnight.

See hot deals below on Blu-ray players:

Sony Blu-ray Disc Player: $133

Panasonic 'Ultra-Fast Loading' Blu-ray Player: $127

Click TVPredictions.com to see today's Swanni Sez.


Phillip Swann is president and publisher of TVPredictions.com. He has been quoted in dozens of publications and broadcast outlets, including CNN, Fox News, Inside Edition, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Financial Times, The Associated Press and The Hollywood Reporter. He can be reached at swann@tvpredictions.com or at 703-505-3064.

Click TVPredictions.com to read more news and features on TV technology. 

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