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HD DVD fails to narrow sales gap, despite massive price cuts

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HD DVD fails to narrow sales gap, despite massive price cuts

Postby dolphinius_rex on Fri Jul 06, 2007 12:18 pm

As most people probably know, in June, Toshiba started a $100 price cut on their HD DVD Players, and began pushing them much harder. They followed up with a claim of selling 70% of the HiDef standalone players within a certain time period (I can't remember the exact time period they quoted). This news was then followed by the Blockbuster announcement that they would stock Blu-Ray exclusively in 1450 more brick & morter locations, on top of the original 250 stores (which also stocked HD DVD).

So how have sales been going for both formats?? Here's the complete list of numbers given to us by Home Media Magezine, from Nielsen Videoscan:

Code: Select all
Day      Week         YTD         SI
01/07  63.3/36.7   63.3/36.7   41.2/58.8
01/14  68.2/31.8   65.7/34.3   43.2/56.8
01/21  67.8/32.2   66.4/33.6   45.1/54.9
01/28  68.8/31.2   67.0/33.0   46.7/53.3
02/04  69.0/31.0   67.4/32.6   48.1/51.9     
02/11  69.6/30.4   67.7/32.3   49.3/50.7
02/18  65.0/35.0   67.4/32.6   50.3/49.7
02/25  68.5/31.5   67.4/32.6   51.5/48.5
03/04  65.7/34.3   67.2/32.8   52.2/47.8
03/11  68.7/31.3   67.9/32.1   52.8/47.2
03/18  81.7/18.3   69.2/30.8   54.3/45.7
03/25     n/a      70.4/29.6   55.6/44.4
04/01     n/a      69.9/30.1   56.2/43.8
04/08  62.4/37.6   69.4/30.6   56.4/43.6
04/15    61/39       69/31       57/43
04/22    52/48       68/32       57/43
04/29    71/29       68/32       58/42
05/06    60/40       68/32       57/43
05/13    62/38       68/32       57/43
05/20    58/42       67/33       57/43
05/27    69/31       67/33       58/42
06/03    61/39       67/33       59/41
06/10    66/34       67/33       59/41
06/17    64/36       67/33       59/41
06/24    70/30       67/33       59/41
07/01    65/35       67/33       60/40


More info on sales statistics can be found here:
http://forums.highdefdigest.com/showthread.php?t=10996

For those interested, here are the title release schedules for both formats:

HD DVD:
June 26, 2007
American Me (Universal)
Army of Darkness (Re-issue) (Universal)
Being John Malkovich (Universal)
The Big Lebowski (Universal)
Black Snake Moan (Paramount)
Bulletproof (Universal)
Dead Silence (Universal)
Freedom: 1 (Bandai Visual)
Hustle & Flow (Paramount)
Mallrats (Universal)
Meet Joe Black (Universal)
Mystery Men (Universal)
Unleashed (Re-issue) (Universal)
The Watcher (Universal)

June 12, 2007
Black Christmas (2006) (Weinstein)
Born on the Fourth of July (Universal)
Breach (Universal)
Bruce Almighty (Universal)
Daylight (Universal)
Harsh Times (Weinstein)
Liar Liar (Universal)
Living Landscapes: The World's Most Beautiful Places (HD Environments)
Monty Python's The Meaning of Life (Universal)
Music and Lyrics (Warner)
Sneakers (Universal)

June 05, 2007
Coming to America (Paramount)
The Cowboys (Warner)
Norbit (DreamWorks)
Rio Bravo (Warner)
Trading Places (Paramount)

Blu-Ray:
June 26, 2007
Black Snake Moan (Paramount)
Hustle & Flow (Paramount)

June 19, 2007
Bridge to Terabithia (Buena Vista)

June 12, 2007
Blood & Chocolate (Sony)
Cruel Intentions (Sony)
Daddy's Little Girls (Lionsgate)
Ghost Rider (Sony)
Music and Lyrics (Warner)
Primeval (Buena Vista)
Seven Years in Tibet (Sony)

June 05, 2007
Blood Diamond (Warner)
Bruce Springsteen with the Sessions Band: Live in Dublin (Sony BMG)
Coming to America (Paramount)
The Cowboys (Warner)
Hellboy (Sony)
The Messengers (Sony)
Norbit (Paramount)
Rescue Me: The Complete Third Season (Sony)
Rio Bravo (Warner)
Trading Places (Paramount)

As you can see, the week of June 26 was huge in terms of releases on HD DVD compared to Blu-Ray... and the only titles released on Blu-Ray were dual format. Despite that fact however, Blu-Ray outsold HD DVD by 65:35 for that week.

June was considered HD DVD best chance to outsell Blu-Ray for the first time this year, based on the combined increase in hardware sales, price drops, and superior release numbers. Considering that not only did HD DVD fail to outsell Blu-Ray, but didn't even manage to narrow the sales margins... and considering we seem to be on the cusp of a $100 PS3 price drop (the most commonly used Blu-Ray player, and the most advanced)... I would say the future looks very bleak for HD DVD at this point.

Comments?
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Postby Wesociety on Fri Jul 06, 2007 12:22 pm

The HD DVD title sales performance has definitely been lower than many people have expected.

Perhaps the new player owners have not yet started buying titles? I'm not sure...

Combo discs are probably also hurting the format. I know of a lot of people that hate combos and some even refuse to buy titles that are only available on the combo format. I hate combos too of course.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Fri Jul 06, 2007 12:44 pm

I think part of it may be people who started with XBox 360 drives, and moved up to a standalone player when the sale hit. Some people on Highdefdigest and AVS have 2 or 3 stand alone's even :o So people in these scenarios won't be buying more discs then they used to probably.
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Postby Wesociety on Fri Jul 06, 2007 1:34 pm

dolphinius_rex wrote:I think part of it may be people who started with XBox 360 drives, and moved up to a standalone player when the sale hit. Some people on Highdefdigest and AVS have 2 or 3 stand alone's even :o So people in these scenarios won't be buying more discs then they used to probably.

Ahh, good point. I wasn't considering the HD DVD owners that have multiple players. :o
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Postby Grain on Fri Jul 06, 2007 4:30 pm

The adoption rate of HD as a whole has been slow enough for neither camp to throw in the towel yet IMO. I personally (not counting online) only know one fella who who has a HD player of any kind, a XBox 360 HD-DVD drive. None of my friends have a PS3 yet, or standalone players of either format. My personal opinion is that there won't be any coffin nails in either format until after this coming Christmas shopping season.

One thing that is a little more cut and dried, the Wii is kicking the shit out of MS and Sony in the console arena.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Fri Jul 06, 2007 6:28 pm

Grain wrote:One thing that is a little more cut and dried, the Wii is kicking the shit out of MS and Sony in the console arena.


Especially when you consider that unlike MS and Sony, Nintendo has been making money on every console, accessory and game since Day 1.

Back onto HiDef though, I wonder if mass adoption will even happen while the format war continues? I think a lot of people are afraid of choosing the wrong format and wasting a lot of money on it. The professional industry however seems to be moving to Blu-Ray at a similar pace to their adoption of DVD back "in the day". HD DVD isn't even considered by businesses at the moment, because of the capacity difference, and lack of available burners.
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Postby Grain on Fri Jul 06, 2007 7:00 pm

dolphinius_rex wrote:I wonder if mass adoption will even happen while the format war continues? I think a lot of people are afraid of choosing the wrong format and wasting a lot of money on it. The professional industry however seems to be moving to Blu-Ray at a similar pace to their adoption of DVD back "in the day". HD DVD isn't even considered by businesses at the moment, because of the capacity difference, and lack of available burners.


Not only afraid of choosing the wrong format, a lot are completely unaware of them. Heck, a lot are having trouble grasping HD TV. I don't think HD-DVD's name has helped the situation either. Ultimately, I'd still say that both formats face the possibility of not achieving mainstream acceptance, and being doomed to niche markets (talking strictly home video/theatre that is, console's, computers not withstanding). I really don't think the winning vote has been cast yet, one huge hurdle yet to be overcome is getting Joe Everyman to decide that he's not happy with DVD's pic & audio quality anymore. Then tell him that he needs to buy a new a/v receiver with hdmi inputs to fully enjoy it, and watch the masses say "forget it".
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Postby Wesociety on Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:04 pm

Well, this holiday season should also be a big HDTV purchase time period. With all of the new HDTV's going into homes, high definition player purchasing is also bound to increase...
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Postby vinnie97 on Tue Jul 17, 2007 2:48 am

Grain wrote:Not only afraid of choosing the wrong format, a lot are completely unaware of them. Heck, a lot are having trouble grasping HD TV. I don't think HD-DVD's name has helped the situation either. Ultimately, I'd still say that both formats face the possibility of not achieving mainstream acceptance, and being doomed to niche markets (talking strictly home video/theatre that is, console's, computers not withstanding). I really don't think the winning vote has been cast yet, one huge hurdle yet to be overcome is getting Joe Everyman to decide that he's not happy with DVD's pic & audio quality anymore. Then tell him that he needs to buy a new a/v receiver with hdmi inputs to fully enjoy it, and watch the masses say "forget it".

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Postby algrinch on Tue Jul 24, 2007 8:16 am

Something that holds me back for either format, other than being cheap, is not having a TV that fully supports High Definition.

A PS3 appeals to me, but what is the point if I don't have a 1080p TV to take advantage of the picture quiality.

And its not like I have crap either. I have a 36" flatscreen CRT TV that is 4-5 years old, with a complete home theatre audio system.

Until I can justify spending the money on a 1080p TV there is no point in buying a HD player of anykind.

Currently, I am fairly happy with the DVD format.
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Postby SithTracy on Tue Jul 24, 2007 10:25 am

algrinch wrote: And its not like I have crap either. I have a 36" flatscreen CRT TV that is 4-5 years old, with a complete home theatre audio system.

Until I can justify spending the money on a 1080p TV there is no point in buying a HD player of anykind.

Currently, I am fairly happy with the DVD format.
Same here... Have a 36" Flat TV (though it is a crappy Sony and freaks out), I can't justify the investment... DVD's are fine for me too and I think the majority of people are on our side.... and if the majority waits by the time the dust settles on the HD format war something better may come along.
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Postby algrinch on Tue Jul 24, 2007 10:55 am

SithTracy wrote:Same here... Have a 36" Flat TV (though it is a crappy Sony and freaks out),


Ok I guess I should admit it, My TV is CRAP! It is a Sony and also freaks out.
The picture is excellent, its the electronic crack smoking brain that has the problem. I hesitate to mention it, being that it hasn't been acting up for about a month. For a few weeks I was scared to turn it on.

Now that I am an Ordained Minister with http://ulc.net/ I am going to try an exorcism next time it happens. If I can get the SONY demons out it should be fine.
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Postby Grain on Tue Jul 24, 2007 11:04 am

If your brave you fellas could take the backs off your Sony's and give them a cleaning. Not saying that's your problem, but mine work a lot better afterwards. Don't take as long to start up, less "crackling" etc.
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Postby algrinch on Tue Jul 24, 2007 11:17 am

If mine starts acting up with any kind of consistency I will try that as a last resort, currently, cross my fingers, it's working fine.
It's definitely the last Sony TV I will ever own, and probably the last sony product, other than maybe a PS3.
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Postby Wesociety on Tue Jul 24, 2007 7:13 pm

You guys don't know what you're missing. There is no way I could go back to a standard def TV now. I guess I'm spoiled, but I really do not like watching standard def cable now... Of course DVD's look better (compared to SDTV), but upscaled DVD's look REALLY good too. :)
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Postby SithTracy on Tue Jul 24, 2007 9:37 pm

Wesociety wrote:You guys don't know what you're missing.
I know what I am missing, my friend has a HD setup... It is impressive, but I have two young kids and I don't watch a ton of TV... Living in WI and being from IL... I am a sports fan and if I could get Chicago stations to see my White Sox (though this year is tough to take... I'm still riding high from 2005), perhaps that might be enough to convince me... but I have have daughters and am the only male in the house... Hard to get a game in... find myself sitting at the PC and listening to it on the radio.

I'm in no hurry for HD.
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