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Blu-ray Hits 1 million, HD DVD Poised for Comeback

by April 24, 2007

According to Business Wire, Blu-ray Disc has become the first high definition format to sell more than a million discs, a milestone it has achieved in less than one year. Blu-ray Disc sales also accounted for 70 percent of the sales figures published by Home Media Research.

Blu-ray's sales lead has increased each month since the first of the year and nearly three out of every four high definition movie sold in March were on Blu-ray Disc.

Industry projections suggest that this steady growth trend will continue based on the fact that seven of the eight major studios are releasing an ever-increasing number of blockbuster movies on Blu-ray Disc. In 2006, 18 of the top 20 selling DVDs were released by studios that are publishing their movies on Blu-ray Disc. Blu-ray titles accounted for eight of the top ten selling high definition titles in the first quarter of this year and since the introduction of both high definition formats, seven of the top selling high definition movies are on Blu-ray Disc.

This not to suggest that HD DVD is sitting on the sidelines waiting to see what happens. In fact, the new series Planet Earth: The Complete BBC Series has broken new ground on Amazon.com, a move that has some analysts proclaiming a turn-around comeback for HD DVD. Others say the strong sales for HD DVD copies of Planet Earth coincide with what appears an "impressive" sales recovery for HD DVD, at least as measured by Amazon in the past three weeks. Other industry watchers say the spike in sales was due to "a cooridanted buy-a-thon on the part of some online HD DVD supporters in honor of the format's first anniversary." Nonetheless, HD DVD backers seem to be jubilant over the news.

Once the back patting from both sides stop, where does it leave us, the ones waiting on the sidelines, carefully watching who will jump ship and start building dual format players? Well, that's another story, of which I'm sure we'll be talking about in the upcoming months.