According to a Dec. 31 article in The New York Times, most buyers are still on the fence when it comes to the high-def disc battle, with neither camp reporting impressive numbers. Citing data from Adams Media Research, 578,000 HD DVD and 370,000 Blu-ray players would be rung up in 2007, hardly numbers to brag about compared with, say, the 5 million iPhones rumored to be sold since last summer's launch.
While the Times projected that content could determine the ultimate winner of the Blu-ray/HD DVD format war, maybe working content will be the clincher.
In the past month alone, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, and the Blade Runner Collection have been cited for glitches ranging from wrong format distribution to wrong resolution output.
Warner Bros. is taking back HD DVDs of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which mistakenly wound up in the limited-edition Blu-ray
box set, and replacing them with the correct BD versions. A call to
1-800-553-6937 puts the replacement process in the
Warner Home Video's Blade Runner Collection was released in December
in both formats, and Blu-ray.com reports that some Blu-ray buyers found
the set's fifth disc (the workprint) to be a mislabeled dupe of the
first disc containing the final cut. For a fast track to WHV, see phone
Blu-ray.com also reports that when T3: Rise of the Machines hit
stores in mid-December, early adopters found that despite a
1080p-compatible pronouncement on the box, the movie only displays in
1080i. Do-over discs aren't currently available, but buyers can call
Warner at the popular number above to get on the list for a replacement
in the future.
Disney, meanwhile, is compensating early buyers of Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pea
with replacement discs for those who experience framing problems from
faulty early pressings. The Disney hotline is 1-800-723-2843. —Rebecca Day
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