EU Seeks Data on Blu-ray, HD DVD Licensing

The European Commission (EU) is reportedly looking into the licensing strategies behind the two rival next-gen DVD formats, Blu-ray and HD DVD, regarding competitive practices. It is not yet clear whether the probe is strictly routine, but BBC News said the action is not considered an official inquiry at this stage.

An EU spokesman said the commission asked the two formats' primary firms, Sony and Toshiba, to submit licensing information. In Brussels, the EU reportedly sent letters in July to all makers of HD DVD and Blu-ray products, to date, requesting information.

The EU seeks details of how proponents of both proprietary formats plan to license their products to hardware manufacturers of disc players, as well as to potential makers of the discs themselves.

Sony said in a statement, "There are no indications of any complaint, nor of any antitrust concerns, on the part of the Commission or anyone else."