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Target Not Going Blu-ray Only, Despite Reports

A growing number of tech Web sites last week helped spread the "news" that Target had decided to join the ranks of Blu-ray Disc backers like Blockbuster Video by deciding to phase out all its HD DVD products by the holiday selling season and feature Blu-ray exclusively.

This week, Target played down that mindset (which was strongly encouraged by Sony's statements on the issue and its use of the term "exclusive") and said it had never planned to stop offering HD DVD products. HD DVD proponents point out the Target deal with Blu-ray is to place its BDP-S300 disc player on "end caps"--a promotional mechanism whereby certain products are highlighted away from similar products in a display setting by the retailer, often for an extra fee.

While the Target plan is designed to give Blu-ray players a more visible advantage at the brick-and-mortar level, the HD DVD player from Toshiba will continue to be featured on the Target Web site, and the HD DVD drive add-on for the Xbox 360 and HD DVD movie titles will continue to be offered at Target outlets, according to Engadget.

At the same time, BJ's Wholesale Club, a big-box wholesale chain of about 170 stores located mostly in the eastern U.S., does appear to be phasing out its HD DVD products, according to inside sources cited by Video Business.

BJ's Web site this week is featuring several Blu-ray movie titles for sale, while a site search for HD DVD titles prompted none.