The war of words between the rival high-definition format backers has escalated following an announcement by Sony
that US retailer Target
will sell only Blu-ray DVD players.
The HD-DVD camp has hit back at the claims, citing the fact that HD-DVD products will still be available in Target shops and that players will still be sold through the company's website.
"It appears that Sony has simply purchased an end cap. Target is not exclusively carrying Blu-ray products," a spokesman for HD-DVD told www.vnunet.com
"From our perspective not a lot has changed and it is also worth noting that Target is not quoted in Sony's press release."
Ken Graffeo, executive vice president of high-definition strategic marketing at Universal Studios Home Entertainment
, does not envisage a change in Target's plans to carry both formats.
"Target will continue to carry the Xbox 360 HD-DVD drive as well as HD-DVD titles," he said. "In fact, it continues to sell Toshiba
HD-DVD players on its website."
Graffeo agreed that Sony had bought an end cap, just as the HD-DVD camp had done in retail stores such as BestBuy
and Circuit City
"What is important is that standalone HD-DVD players are still much more affordable than Blu-ray players, and they offer a better experience. Just compare titles appearing in both formats like 300
or Blood Diamond
," he said.
"Ultimately consumers will determine what format provides the greatest value. "
However, a study by analysts at Parks Associates
claims that the Blu-ray format has taken the upper hand in the US high-definition market.