HDTV which delivers up to 10 times the resolution of regular TV is expected to continue to grow in 2006 to exceed $25 billion globally, according to ABI Research.
HDTV television will be essential after analogue TV is cut off in Australia 2008 or 2009. According to Vamsi Sistla, ABI Research’s director of broadband and multimedia research, the HDTV market has broken into two camps. One camp is focused to creating the intelligence inside the TV itself, while the other camp focuses on devices that will connect to it like media center PCs and recorders.
“Since nobody knows yet which of these positions will prove truer, most major vendors are trying to cover all the eventualities. They want to make sure they have a product for every type of consumer who walks into a retail store,” Sistla said in a statement.
HDTV players like LG Electronics will release three models of LCD TV with built-in digital video recorder, eliminating the need for a high-end external device, while Toshiba has a high-def DVD player on the market now.
This duality inherent in HDTV also carries over into its DVD sector with the competing HD-DVD and Blu-ray technologies. Yesterday, Netflix announced that it will begin carrying movies in both HD-DVD and Blu-ray when the high-definition formats launch later this year.
“High-definition DVD is the next wave of excitement in home entertainment and we’ll be there at its inception,” Netflix Chairman and CEO Reed Hastings said in a statement. “With far sharper images, better sound and more features, we expect high-def will greatly enhance DVD’s consumer appeal and extend its popularity over the next decade or more.”
Netflix is following suit of the many studios that made announcements at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show to begin releasing their catalogs in high definition.
Warner Home Video said it will introduce 24 titles in HD-DVD on March 28. Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Paramount Pictures Home Entertainment and The Weinstein Company made similar announcements.
On the other side, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, Lionsgate and Paramount said they have each selected between 10 and 20 titles to launch concurrent with the debut of Blu-ray hardware later this year.