Out With the Old, In With the New
Jody Sally, vice president of marketing, delivered an emotional speech at Toshiba's press conerence. “HD DVD is not dead,” she said. “We firmly believe HD DVD is the best format for the consumer.” she continued. She then pointed out all the format’s advantages over Blu-ray, including Web interactivity, lower replication costs, cheaper players and a larger marketshare in standalone players. Ultimately, the company announced no new HD DVD products at the show for 2008, and no one at Toshiba would say if that was a change since the news of Warner’s departure.
Shortly after CES, Toshiba announced a series of price adjustments aimed at boosting sales of its favored format. Part of the pricing strategies includes dropping prices on HD DVD players in the U.S. market. The MSRP of the entry-model HD-A3 is $149.99, the HD-A30, with 1080p output, $199.99, and the high-end HD-A35, $299.99.
On the Blu-ray side, CES was quite a bit more upbeat, with new players introduced by Panasonic, Sony, Sharp, Philips and others. Panasonic announced an HtiB product with Blu-ray and wireless rear speakers. Hitachi showed the previously announced Blu-ray camcorder plus a new model that adds a hard disc drive.