Then there's connectivity. For example, let's say someone has one of our Princess discs, and they want to hook up to a tea party over at Disneyland scheduled for 2 o'clock Eastern time on Saturday. They put the Blu-ray disc in, and, because the player is already connected to the Internet, they're suddenly having a live Princess party. Cinderella, who's hosting the party live from Disneyland, says, "Okay, we have three activities we can do. Pick which one it's going to be." You vote online, it's instantly tabulated, and you see that today you're going to do something with Jasmine.
When we joined Blu-ray, we were very excited about its potential. And now that I see it play out in our development labs, it's absolutely outstanding. But it's all based on having enough capacity.
Many of our readers have bought the same movies in multiple formats over the years. Why should they replace their collections yet again?
To get somebody to invest in a new library, you have to make a monumental leap forward, and Blu-ray makes that leap. I liken the situation until now to being "all dressed up with no place to go," with all these high-def-ready systems out there. Well, we're giving them someplace to go, with a very exciting visual and sonic experience.
The studios can choose to down-rez the video from a player's analog outputs. What's your stand on that?
We have no intentions of doing that in the short term, and would do it only if we had an egregious situation where it was necessary to protect our content. As a zealous consumer myself, I don't want to have to replace my plasma TV just because it's not HDMI-ready. So - as with everything in our business these days - with new technology, we're going to have to strike a balance between protecting content and enabling people to do what they want.
Will the competition between the formats cause many people to hold off on buying a high-def player until the dust settles?
It's unfortunate that the situation is going to be unsettled, but I believe the market power and superior technology behind Blu-ray will make this issue very short-lived.
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