Re: HD Disc Format War Not Over By a Long Shot
"Beta was the paradigm shift that brought movies to the masses: The studios tried to kill Beta, but now they make much more money off sales of pre-recorded movies than they do off movie ticket sales in theatres
VHS made Beta redundant for movie viewing (particularly when the Porn industry chose VHS!)
LD's made VHS redundant for movie viewing
DVD's made LD's redundant for movie viewing
Blu-Ray and HD-DVD are attempting to make DVD's redundant, but technology and the market are moving much too fast for this to ever happen"
Sony's Beta failure had far more to do with Sony not wanting to license Beta to anyone==a la Apple Computers--both were better than their counterparts VHS and PC's, but JVC and Panasonic basically allowed anyone to build a VHS machine--hence they were much cheaper and only absolute videoholics moaned. Apple marginalized their computer business by doing this too. Apple allowed their code to be supplied to their peripheral makers and worked with the peripheral manufacturers to make sure everything would work as smoothly as possible at the time. Apple's have always crashed far less often and have had far fewer problems because of this. But IBM gave away their PC architecture (wrongly thinking the future was in big computers) and gave away their code to Bill Gates. Imagine how huge IBM would be if they kept both and just licensed the technology. So Microsoft was just interested in the Operating System and allowed all comers to make the computers to run it. The problem was that Microsoft didn't work with the computer and peripheral manufacturers close enough because they kept very important aspects of their OS coding a state secret. Hence the inferior machines won being half the price, as Apple didn't license any computer manufacturers to make their machines until much later, when it was too late, and they eventually rescinded that and took back all computer manufacturing. Most start-ups would have collapsed from that mistake, but Apple maintained a very loyal following, generally beautiful design, and then the iPOD took off along with iTunes to make them really matter. Now with their superior new OS X Leopard combined with the same Intel chips that PC's use, along with very comparable pricing, they now have gradually been increasing their computer and laptop market share. Now PC users can use an Intel Mac and partition the hard drive or use another hard drive and run windoze on it. For the last 5 years they have been on a great trajectory of making great decisions along with the best industrial design--Sony sometimes has great industrial design too.
LD's never made VHS redundant. LD's were always marginalized and essentially became a smaller version of vinyl compared to cd's. LD machines were expensive as were the discs. Only the well-healed videophile dipped their toes into that water.
Heck, within two years of introduction, DVD's machines and discs sold more than every Laser Disc machine and Disc ever made.
Blu Ray and even the still breathing HD will only be marginalized when downloads of movies and shows in Hi-Def are done quickly (a la FIOS) and can be burned to a disc or at least offer a great printable and artfully done information sheet (or sheets) that can easily be conveniently boxed with a disc, or kept on computer file to be printed when wanted. Then a lot of people might even use a filing system for these "beautiful" and informative pages in a file cabinet for easy access when showing others the movie. Maybe I'm old, but I'll always miss the LP album cover artwork and information.