The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) has recently brought the high definition format to China. In order to accomplish this, they had to not only provide the technology to create Blu-ray Discs and players to Chinese manufacturers, but also create a licensing format which would lower costs and streamline the production process. One of the advantages to the rest of the Blu-ray buying world, commented Mark Leathan, Marketing Director at Samsung, was that we will soon see the "entry of the Chinese manufacturers into the Blu ray market that we will have a $99 Blu ray player."
During last year's holiday season, Blu-ray players could be found for as low as $128, though quantities were limited due to the availability of product and the high demand for the high definition players. With sales this year predicted to be at least twice of what they were last year, it is expected that the $99 price point will become the norm for entry-level players, rather than as part of a special sales promotion.
These lower priced entries, however, will likely have little effect on major consumer electronic manufacturers. It is highly unlikely that Sony, Panasonic, and Samung will participate in entry-level game of slim-margins, and will likely leave that to the new Chinese manufactures and new products from Magnavox or Sylvania.
As you can see from the magnitude of the announcements over the past few days, the Blu-ray format is expected to be the hot ticket item this holiday season. The only question is, how many millions of people will wake-up to a new Blu-ray Disc player and Blu-ray copy of 'Lord of the Rings'? [via blu-ray]
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