"Citing VideoScan, the press release says HD DVD movies outsold "all other high-definition formats" by a factor of nearly three in the month of August. Whether the HD DVD group is simply choosing to not mention Blu-ray by name, or whether other lesser known high-def formats (ie WMVHD and D-Theater) are included in that number is unclear, and could account for the disparity between earlier projections based on Amazon sales data that have given HD DVD an even larger lead over Blu-ray specifically."
My understanding is brick and mortar sales only, and no e-tailers are included. In the case of Amazon, they've promoted the HD formats pretty heavily---they're usually by far the cheapest, with the extra 10% off for a year as a bonus, so I have to believe that they control a bigger share of the HD disc market than they do in the regular DVD market, especially since so few B&M outlets actually carry the things. So the real ratio is probably somewhere between 3:1 and 11:1 when you consider all sales, but since Amazon doesn't release their actual numbers we'll most likely never know for sure.
That's an excellent point Mark. Lets not forget that stores like Best Buy and Circuit City have showcased Blu-ray to the point that HD DVD did not even exist. Their sales associates were programmed to sell the virtues of Blu-ray before the actual performance of the hardware and software were made public. I would be willing to bet that the numbers are closer to 11 to 1 than 3 to 1 when all e-tail and retail sales are considered. The studios are looking at their TOTAL UNITS SOLD, not just VideoScan numbers. Its all about the bottom line.
Though many people do not like the "Combo" discs, I think it is an attribute of HD DVD that will fuel greater software sales. Many people will still have standard DVD players in the home and will not want to buy a title twice. Many may choose the HD DVD version even if they do not yet own a player but plan to do so at a future date. The versatility of a Combo disc is a big plus. Its all about the bottom line.
You left out some important content "month of August -- a number". "all other high-definition formats" is an important bit of information because it changes the substance from a HD vrs. BR to a HD vrs all other formats of HD comparison.
It is hard to make any determination on actual sales numbers. Each retailer can support their own claims as to what the sales difference is between the two formats, and we can go on antidotal data we can gleem form comments, posts and other information, but none of it means much at this time.
Is it 11 to 1, or 4 to 1, or 3 to 1 when we are speaking of the limited size of sales is truly meaningless. While I believe more HD hardware units have been sold (based on numbers of hardware units produced, not on verafiable data) it would stand to reason more HD-DVD disks have been sold.
But all of this misses the main point of the article. The article was talking about Attach Rates; the qty of disks purchased per hardware unit. But to make anything of these numbers (by the article author) is pretty meaningless in itself. These formats just have not been out long enough or have enough sales data to project anything valid.
All other things aside, I find it almost incomprehensible that any sencient human would drop 1000 bucks on a HD format of any kind at the sales pitch of a BB salesperson. Certainly here in the lower mainland of BC, I go to Future Shop to buy my dvds, and have yet to encounter a single sales person who can articulate why BD is better than HD, and Future Shop, like it's US parent company BB, is pushing BD, albeit without much success. Would seem to me that the kind of buyer who is going to purchase a HD format will not depend on the word of a commission sales person who him/herself cannot afford what they are selling.
Based on what I have seen in my area, it isnt surprising to see HD outsell BD by a large margin accross the board.
My local BB has stopped pushing BD over HD, and simply explains the products when asked. Which is a shame.
I have lost one of my favorite past times: Going to a BB and watching the sales folks stumble when the answers they give are contradicted. If the answer they gave was questioned, they had nowhere to go, as it wasn't in their play book.
I sincerely doubt it. The Amazon sales data is so out of whack compared to the VideoScan numbers. I just cannot believe that the brick and mortar retailers are selling MORE Blu-ray than HD DVD to move the sales that much lower. Not to mention the fact that even the best Blu-ray releases have yet to break in the top 100 at Amazon. It just doesn't add up.
Why does HD-DVD boosterism always seem to involve accusing someone of dishonesty?
It's perfectly credible to me that Amazon.com's sales numbers don't match the aggregate market. There could be any number of explanations. For one, just off the top of my head : given the reports in this forum of delays with Amazon getting stock of and shipping new releases, compared to physical retailers, and considering that BD buyers had to wait rather longer than HD-DVD buyers to get their players and their first discs, it's possibly that they are more impatient and so are buying their discs on release date at the store, as opposed to HD-DVD buyers who are choosing to wait a little and get a discounted price. Clearly, with the price of the BD machines hgiher than that of the HD-DVD machines, they have more invested in High Definition, and so may not feel that saving money on the discs is such a big deal.
Videoscan number do include some online retailers but it does not include Amazon.com and does not include Walmart (they are very protective about their numbers) B&M and online sales. Also another reason the numbers might be skewed could be that pre-orders aren't taken into account for Videoscan. I know personally I have pre-ordered a number of titles from Amazon and various other e-tailers.
There's no Best Buy conspiracy. BB employees hear that Blu-Ray is the 'best' from a fellow employee who is a video game nerd and has been there longer than them and they assume that that guy knows exactly what he's talking about and they just repeat it to customers. Many (but not all) of Best Buy's staff are barely trained to answer questions in their department so if BB can't even get them to comprehend the basics of their area, they can't train them to secretly push Blu-Ray.
Numbers and Ratios can be used in all sorts of ways. And depending on who is spitting out those numbers/ratios, it can tell a very different story. This is mostly speculative data, so let's not argue about the numbers unless you want to argue about which Star Trek Warp drive is faster.
Last "confirmed" reports was something like 70,000 HD DVD players so at 8.4 movies each equals 588,000 movies sold to date.
If we use the same ratio for Blu Ray owners: 10,000 BP1000 players at 8.4 movies each equals 84,000. But there's less titles available, no 50gb BDs and less "must" have titles too. So we'll give them a 33% penality to make it 56,000 movies sold to date.
588,000 vs 56,000 total movies sold that's very close to 11:1 70,000 vs 10,000 players is 7:1 Samsung BP1000 launched in mid July with just a few movies and then a few more released in August. I can see a BP1000 owner putting out the first $1000 in July then buying a bunch of movies in August making the ratio 3:1 for the month of August.
Numbers for Total movies and hardware sold would still highly favor HD DVD for September and October. Blu Ray will make huge gains in both ratios (if you count the PS3) in November and December. I don't see anything here to argue about. It's still too early to decide anything based on numbers.
Some other salient points as stated above and at ZDNet:
• These figures are from August
• HD DVD is also on track to having 230 titles by Christmas. (HD DVD currently has around 80 vs. Blu-ray's 48)
• None of the currently announced Blu-ray titles match the "coolness" factor of the announced HD DVD titles.
• The PS3 Factor: Most people do not play their DVD movies through a game console and homes with game consoles have a parallel DVD player. Most homes also do not own HDTVs. If they do not currently own an HDTV, the fact that it plays Blu-ray movies is not going to matter all that much if they hook the player up to a standard television.
• XBOX 360 shipments will be in the 10 million range by Christmas 2006 and Only a fraction of those XBOX 360-owners have to buy the new HD-DVD add-on drive (at $199, much less than the cost of a PS3 device) to undermine the advantage Sony has with an integrated Blu-ray player, given that only 500,000 PS3 devices will be shipped, GLOBALLY, by this Christmas season. The add-on strategy enables people to customize their gaming experience with the XBOX 360. They don't need to spend the extra money if they don't have an HDTV and the XBOX 360 will be on store shelves this season with LOTS of games available for people to buy.
• Word on the street about early Blu-ray hardware and software performance has slowly circulated to the people on the floor at the electronics stores. Bad news travels quickly and it will take time for the new hardware and software to overcome a lackluster start.
• With the swift growth of available software, next year will likely see more manufacturers from China, Korea and Japan driving the price of hardware even lower on the HD DVD side.