Edit: It’s more official-er, Toshiba has issued a press release.
It’s finally official, Toshiba has dropped HD-DVD, so what happens next? Well, that’s a question many are asking. We’ll take a quick look at each aspect of the Toshiba HD-DVD industry to get a better idea of what’s to come.
If you own an HD-DVD player, then this is probably a pretty good scenario for you, despite how it sounds at first. There are hundreds of HD titles available, and within the coming months, they will hit rock bottom prices. In theory, you’ll be able to fill an entire movie library for $100.
The internal PC high definition drive market really hasn’t been much of a format war. This is widely due to home theater enthusiasts not only requiring the expensive drive, but also an expensive video card capable of displaying high definition content. At which point, it makes far more sense to purchase a stand alone device.
The final nail in the PC coffin was the lack of any PC software requiring users to purchase the drives. Remember, CDROM drives weren’t sold based off the assumption that the emerging technology was “better” than floppy diskettes, they were sold because of Myst.
Don’t believe such software could push a product today? Microsoft Windows Vista’s sales increased after the release of Halo 2 for the PC. A game that required DirectX 10, which is only available under Vista. Funny, considering Halo 2 was an Xbox game, a DirectX 7 device.
Microsoft has long been a strong supporter of the HD-DVD standard, arguably due to a nameless competitor using the rival format, Bluray. However, they never went so far as to embed the HD-DVD drive into their own system, only selling it as an accessory to home theater enthusiasts. This was a risky move by Microsoft that has definitely paid off.
The bottom line for Toshiba is a loss of hundreds of millions of dollars. However, for a company with 200,000 employees this isn’t going to be a death rattle by any stretch. Toshiba’s sales are incredibly diversified, and the company is sure to bounce back strong. They have always been a consumer product and PC manufacturer, and will continue to do so well into the future.