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Sony, Toshiba Continue HD DVD Talks

No late word at press time about ongoing talks between Sony (touting Blu-ray) and Toshiba (pushing HD DVD) over a possible compromise on their two new and incompatible standards for HD-worthy DVD. There were some recent chatter that Panasonic had joined the talks, which would be viewed as a good sign. (Actually, the fact that they're even still talking is good unto itself.)

According to The Blu-ray Web site (which is not the official Web site for either the Blu-ray association or Sony), both sides "are now trying to agree on a hybrid format that takes advantage of each standard's strengths. Toshiba has acknowledged that they are in talks with the rival camp and related parties, but deny that any deal is in the works. The company recognizes a single format is best for consumers, but that doesn't necessarily mean that executives are prepared to agree on a hybrid format."

The Web site also wisely points out that while a final deal is still far from certain, both camps are well aware that "a single unified format would be in their best interest, as a drawn-out fight would likely confuse consumers and hinder the industry's development." And that's an understatement. Stay tuned.