It may had curiously decided to have no Blu-ray promotional presence at CeBIT but now the German hanger-fest is over for another year the King of Proprietary appears to have gotten straight back on the horse by announcing its first formal BD products.
Rather predictably a living room player, a Vaio desktop PC with recordable BD drive and standalone rewriteable drive (the BWU-100A) are what it has in store for us. The first, called the BDP-S1 (above), is expected in July with the latter two tipped for an ‘early summer’ (its words, not ours) release.
With DVD players and rewriteable drives available for next to washers these days it will be a sharp, short shock to the system to hear that the BDP-S1 will cost a whopping $1,000 with the so far spec-less Vaio desktop listed at $2,300. Owners of the Vaio will get a free 25GB single layer Blu-ray disc worth $25 though… ooooh. No pricing was given out for the BWU-100A.
So with the PS3 now officially delayed until Santa season the real next generation race begins. Toshiba has already shown off its first notebook to incorporate an HD DVD drive and I’d have my bets on that technology reaching punters first. Now it is up to the public hordes to choose its champion. Blu-ray may have the superior technology but that didn’t help Betamax when it lost out to VHS almost a quarter of a century ago.
My money remains on Blu-ray but an optimistic part of me believes drives will emerge capable of playing both formats over the next 18 months. I must warn you that this section of my brain is also responsible for my opinion that England is going to win the World Cup…