Blu-ray player breaks $500 barrier at Amazon

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For the first time, Amazon has marked down the price of one of its Blu-ray Disc (BD) players to less than the price of a PS3.  The Samsung BD-P1000 is now available on the online retailer for $499.

Sony announced that a $600 BD player would be coming out this summer, but Amazon beat that by slashing the P1000 price.  The Samsung unit still carries a $900 suggested retail price.

According to January's sales figures, standalone Blu-ray players counted for less than half of all BD hardware.  The PS3 dominated sales of players, thanks in large part to its $600 price point.  The first BD player sold for $1000.

Meanwhile, Amazon has also been selling Toshiba's HD DVD player at well below retail.  The site has a price of about $360 for the $500 unit.