Funai to Offer Lost Blu-Ray Player Under OEM

Funai, a CE firm that manufactures relatively low-cost products, said it plans to have a Blu-ray Disc player on the market before the end of 2007, although it will not use its name as a brand moniker.

Instead, the company's Blu-ray product will be offered to other consumer electronics companies on an OEM basis for resale under their respective brand names, a practice not uncommon in the industry.

According to the Japanese trade publication Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun, price points likely will hover around the $500 level, which is noticeably lower than most current prices for standalone Blu-ray players--but as PC World points out, the Sony PlayStation 3 game console which comes with a built-in Blu-ray drive, comes at about the same price.

HD technology is not new to Funai. It already provides lower-cost LCD TV products on an OEM basis to Yamada Denki, a Japanese electronics retailer in Japan. Funai said its new Blu-ray entry should not be construed that the firm taking sides in the next-gen disc wars; it's also considering an OEM deal to sell HD DVD players.