AfterDawn: Tech news

NEC and Toshiba introduce another blue-laser DVD technology

Written by Petteri Pyyny (Google+) @ 26 Aug 2002 15:33

Most of us had a sigh of relief when several consumer electronics companies announced earlier this year that they have agreed to develop a new blue-laser DVD based on standards that all participating companies have agreed upon. World might have thought that in future (when blue-laser will kill the current red-laser technology) we could avoid the current situation, where recordable DVDs have three different format "camps" that are not compatible with each other. But no...
Japanese consumer electronic giants NEC and Toshiba announced today that they are developing their own version of blue-laser DVD technology, which would not be compatible with Blu-Ray (the standard proposed earlier this year). Toshiba reps defended their decision that their blue-laser DVD solution offers better backwards compatibility to existing DVD technology -- most notably, Toshiba-NEC's technology doesn't use cartridges to protect the disc. For consumers, this is a non-issue, since it is most likely that all Blu-Ray as well as "Toshiba-NEC technology" players will play existing DVDs anyway. But the carrot is meant for content publishers -- changing the DVD plants to use new technology that requires usage of cartridges is more difficult than changing to a technology that doesn't.

Toshiba-NEC's format would also top the recording capacity of Blu-Ray, which can hold 27GB of data on each side of the disc -- new technology would allow 40GBs on each side. Toshiba's reps said anyway that they believe Blu-Ray has its place in the world, suggesting that their technology might be used as a "gateway" to convert DVD plants to use blue-laser technology and later on convert them to use Blu-Ray. Neither of the companies, Toshiba nor NEC, are members of Blu-Ray consortium.

Source: Reuters

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