Blu-ray edges out HD DVD in February

Posted by Mark Raby

Columbus (OH) - For the second month in a row, Blu-ray Disc (BD) sales were about double that of HD DVD, according to recently released February sales data.

According to trade magazine Video Business, around 250,000 Blu-ray movies were sold last month.  HD DVD sales, on the other hand, totaled 125,000.

During January, Blu-ray received a similar sales edge over HD DVD.  Many attributed the advantage to the fact that BD has more studio support and a bigger library of movies, meaning that sales of individual titles were not necessarily greater than HD DVD. However, in the same article, Video Business reported on a format comparison for one movie.  The Departed, which was released on both Blu-ray and HD DVD, sold about 20,000 and 13,000 for the two formats, respectively.

HD DVD backers like Universal and Toshiba claim this is just a fad for PS3 owners who really haven't claimed a devotion to the Blu-ray format.  Universal also fired back by saying that the Blu-ray hardware/software tie ratio is low, considering the volume of PS3 units that have been sold.

At an HDTV conference last week, noted speaker Vito Mandato made the claim that the total number of hardware sales for both formats is about the same, after one weeds out all the PS3s that are not being used to play Blu-ray movies.