Blu-ray Movies Hit 1 Million In Europe

Blu-ray Disc Association attempts to mislead us

Posted by Staff
Blu-ray Movies Hit 1 Million In Europe
The Blu-ray Disc Association European Promotions Committee, a group made up of companies supporting and promoting the HD disc format, has announced that Blu-ray movie sales have now hit the 1-million mark in Europe.

The organisation claims that, in the year to date, Blu-ray accounts for 73% of HD movie disc sales in Europe. Accordingly, Blu-ray movies have outsold their HD-DVD rivals by nearly three to one.

The figures used come from German-based market research company, Media Control GfK International. Week 44 - the week ending November 4th - was when the milestone was reached according to Media Control.

We are also told that if games were factored into the figures then the total number of Blu-ray discs produced for European consumption is 21 million. The announcement states, "The so-called ‘PlayStation effect’ is important since it is creating major economies of scale and makes BD disc replication cost effective."

Additionally, the announcement tells us, "The launch of the PS3 in March was seen as a turning point for the Blu-ray Disc format across Europe, with weekly movie sales of Blu-ray Disc titles averaging between two- and five-times the amount of HD DVD sales week over week."

Blu-ray disc movie sales also saw a high point in week 44 in terms of the number sold in a single week. 66,000 were sold - the most since the format's inception. The release of 300, Spider-Man 3, Die Hard 4.0 and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End in some territories was credited with the sales success.

"This is an important milestone for Blu-ray Disc in Europe and proves once again that whenever consumers have the choice they decide overwhelmingly in favour of BD", said Frank Simonis, chairman of the Blu-ray Disc European Promotions Committee.

Of course, as with all statistics rolled out by an interested party, they need to be taken with a pinch of salt. It has not been explained how the data was gathered and how the figures have been compiled. SPOnG has contacted Bob Charlton at the Blu-ray Disc Association for information on this and just why it is rolling out old sound bytes to promote the format.

What do we mean by this latter comment? Well, the Blu-ray Disc Association European Promotions Committee quotes the following:

"News of the 1 millionth Blu-ray Disc sale in Europe was met with pleasure in many of the leading Hollywood studios. Bob Chapek, Worldwide President, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment believes that this news is the prelude for an exponential growth period in BD sales.

'Blu-ray will inevitably prevail because Blu-ray delivers what consumers want: True High Definition picture without compromise, the best sound quality, the best choice in content, the most in special features, and of course the most disc storage capacity. No tradeoffs. No compromises,” commented Chapek."

That's what the Blu-ray Disc Association wants you to believe, anyway. A background check reveals that he was not being bullish about news of the millionth Blu-ray disc movie sale in Europe. In fact, the comment above was made during a speech at the release party for the movies Cars and Ratatouille back on October 30th.

This is kind of misleading and lazy PR does nothing but undermine the excellent figures quoted. What is the point of that?


SuperSaiyan4 28 Nov 2007 15:15
Here we go again!

True High Definition picture without compromise, the best sound quality, the best choice in content, the most in special features, and of course the most disc storage capacity. No tradeoffs. No compromises,” commented Chapek."

HD-DVD offers (depending on studio) same audio
HD-DVD offers same picture quality (however early blu-ray movies were mpeg-2 codec).

Now the content side of things is the issue technically HD-DVD is the only format to offer the most in-movie experience with the most content and interactivity many blu-ray titles do not support this and or until JAVA+ is released meaning many with early blu-ray players this feature will not be available.

Its not the consumers who look at which disc has the most space but studios like Walt Disney who just approved of a 51gb HD-DVD by Toshiba.

I dont care about space nor do I ask at the kiosk in store 'Hey how much space on this one?' If the movie is HD then its HD the only ones who have a compromise is blu-ray since many additional features are on hd-dvd only AND many blu-ray movies used mpeg-2 encoding AND many many blu-ray movies are region locked whereas HD-DVD's are region free.
tek 28 Nov 2007 15:46
Can you name 5 movies on HD DVD that have DTS HD Master Audio?
The limitations of HD DVD becomes apparent once the HD media matures and people demand better results. Once HD DVD is forced to complete with Blu-ray and include the latest lossless audio on the disc you will see the video quality suffer.
Can you tell me why Paramount released Transformers HD DVD with out lossless audio?
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SuperSaiyan4 28 Nov 2007 16:21
You make a point about the DTS HD audio but I am sure many people look at the back to see which one has what audio when choosing a movie.

But the big question here is how many people own a HD surround system? And do they even exist? I dont see any major company like Sony, Samsung, Toshiba even selling HD Surround systems.

What I will say is when watching a blu-ray movie on my PS3 I can use the audio option via the remote to press +1,2,3 so the audio gets a boost so its even louder by not increasing the volume but this is a PS3 feature same what the PSP has.

I was dissapointed with the sound on Transformers I had hoped the sound would have been louder and clearer.

But since no one owns HD surround sound technology such features of True HD sound is pointless, I havent even read any company even looking to release such systems for next year even so when will it become available?
alexh2o 29 Nov 2007 14:17
SuperSaiyan4 wrote:
I was dissapointed with the sound on Transformers I had hoped the sound would have been louder and clearer.

I think thats probably 100% the limitations of your sound system and nothing to do with the movie... I presume from this general discussion you have watched this on an imported US HD DVD, which you would only do if you could watch it on an HD screen. So my question is, what is the picture quality like on the cgi? Ive heard good things. Can you make out its cgi, say like King Kong, or is it generally crisp and indistinguishable? Decided to put it down as one of my xmas presents so have yet to watch.

Again as for caring about DTS HD or Dolby TrueHD.... unless you have a £10,000+ sound system you are not really going to give a rats about them. Theres a very high probability that if your reciever can even accept DTS HD, it will downgrade it to a 1.5Mbits/s lossy core stream. A compressed codec like Dolby Digital Plus will be more than fine. Also, HD DVD will happily include DTS HD, as will Blu-ray, on every title, once the formats have matured.
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