Yesterday, Toshiba announced that it will no longer produce HD-DVD players, effectively throwing in the towel and making Sony and the Blu-ray camp victorious. Like most consumers, I am happy to see an end to the ridiculous format wars.
These format wars have often been compared to the VHS-Betamax format war of the 80s. The amazing thing is that the outcome of these two wars was determined in totally different ways. The winner of the VHS-Betamax war was decided by consumers. In spite of the fact that the Betamax was technically superior, buyers flocked to the VHS recorders because they were cheaper. If that were the case this time around, HD-DVD with its cheaper price on players and cheaper production pricing for discs, would have won. Instead, in this war, the Hollywood content creators chose the winner. It was the movie studios and their decision to back Blu-ray that made the difference. They say that content is king, and in this case, it certainly was.