Hollywood Studios Endorse Toshiba's HD-DVD Standard

Four major Hollywood studios have selected the Toshiba HD DVD recording format. Paramount Pictures, Universal Pictures, New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. Studios will be using the new 30 GB DVD disc format, created by the DVD Forum, an international group of hardware and software companies and content providers. HD DV
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Four major Hollywood studios have selected the Toshiba HD DVD recording format.

Paramount Pictures, Universal Pictures, New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. Studios will be using the new 30 GB DVD disc format, created by the DVD Forum, an international group of hardware and software companies and content providers. HD DVD--and its competitor Blu-ray, promoted by Sony--use blue laser technology to record HD content.

In February, the DVD Forum approved the specs for the first version of the HD DVD and in September, approved version 1.0 of the re-writable format. Toshiba is planning by the year's end to have the HD DVD-R--a one-time recordable format--ready to release.

"As we enter the age of high-definition broadcasting, consumers increasingly want HD content for their high-definition, large-screen displays, and HD DVD naturally fits in with this trend," said Yoshihide Fujii, president and CEO, Toshiba Digital Media Network.

Toshiba expects to release HD DVD players by late 2005. Also, the company plans to launch a CE player and recorder and a notebook PB with built-in HD DVD drive by the end of next year.

Just a day after the HD DVD announcement, Sony announced a development deal with Singulus Technologies of Germany to mass-produce Blu-ray discs.

Singulus plans to develop prototype replication machines for single-layer Blu-ray Disc Read Only Memories (BD-ROMs) in spring, 2005 and for dual-layer BD-ROMs by next fall.

Sony has already developed BD-ROM mastering equipment and has started accepting orders. It hopes to promote the Blu-ray Disc by selling manufacturing equipment to replicators.