Sony Corportaion of America's Mike Fidler, Senior Vice President of the Blu-ray Disc Group Division, has said in a interview with Widescreen Review that Dolby Digital will most likely be a requirement for pre-recorded Blu-ray. He said that DTS and other audio formats would be optional. Mike Fidler also said that future Blu-ray players would use bare discs and that a hard coating will be implemented on future Blu-ray discs. Hard coating is quite simply a much harder kind of plastic than that currently used on CD's and DVD's. He also said that the Blu-ray recorders and discs in Japan came out before hard coating was implemented. So for better or worse it sounds as though all future Blu-ray products will be made for bare discs with a hard coating. As for Blu-rays timeline Mike Fidler said that the specifications for BD-ROM (pre-recorded Blu-ray Disc) along with BD-R (write once Blu-ray Disc) will be completed by the end of the year. He also said that it would take 18 to 24 months of development time after the finished specification for shipping products to be released. Sony is expecting the first pre-recorded Blu-ray players to be released in the U.S. market by late 2005.