LG to Try Dual Format DVD

LG Electronics has announced that the company will show a new high-definition DVD player at CES. The drive will support both HD DVD and Blu-Ray formats. No mention was made about pricing or availability, or even how the drive would be configured.

Some may view this as good news for the high-definition DVD market, as it “solves” the controversy between the competing formats. Add to this the news that Warner Home Video is set to produce HD DVD/Blu-Ray discs that will have one format on one side and the other format on the other, and it would appear that the hybrid approach is the road to peace.

I predict that this won’t work, at least beyond the short term. I expect that the hybrid drives and discs will be more expensive than the single-format drives, and if this is the case, then the market will eventually pick one of the less expensive options. Only if the hybrid support can be provided at little or no premium for the price will it have a chance for long term success.