Samsung Electronics, a maker of consumer devices and a supporter of the Blu-ray disk (BD) format is quietly selling laptops with HD DVD optical drives on its domestic market. This comes as a surprise, as Samsung earlier decided to scrap its consumers players that would play both BDs and competing HD DVDs.
Samsung M55 notebooks come with 17” screens with 1920x1200 resolution, up to 2GB of memory, 120GB Serial ATA hard disk drive, Nvidia GeForce Go 7600 graphics processing unit with 256MB of memory, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth support and so on. The system with HD DVD read only memory (ROM) drive is equipped with Intel Core Duo T2500 processor, whereas the one with HD DVD burner features Intel Core 2 Duo T7200 central processing unit (CPU). According to Akihabaranews web-site, the more advanced Samsung M55 costs ?2430 or $3185.
For many months Samsung Electronics had been talking about intention to produce a combo player that would support both Blu-ray and HD DVD formats. In fact, Samsung was the first company to start talking about universal players for next-gen DVDs. However, late in November the company decided to scrap support for the hybrid player without disclosing the reasons.
By selling personal computers with HD DVD, Samsung demonstrates that its short-term business interests are more important for the company than promotion of the Blu-ray format. Additionally, it means that the demand for notebooks with HD DVD is pretty strong in
The HD DVD is pushed aggressively by Toshiba, Intel, Microsoft and Nec as well as being standardized at the DVD Forum, which represents over 230 consumer electronics, information technology, and content companies worldwide. Blu-ray is backed by Sony Corp. At present, the Blu-ray is supported by such leading manufacturers as Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Sharp, Sony and others, meanwhile, Toshiba’s HD DVD relies only on the company itself and RCA/Thompson. With the help of LG, HD DVD may actually gain a supporter, even though this supported will not be able to claim HD DVD support officially due to lack of iHD.
Among Hollywood studios HD DVD is supported by New Line Cinema, Paramount Pictures, Universal Pictures and Warner Bros. Blu-ray disc is supported by Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox , Universal Pictures, Walt Disney and Warner Bros.
HD DVD discs can store up to 15GB on a single layer and up to 30GB on two layers. Its competitor, Blu-ray, can store up to 27GB per single layer and up to 50GB on two layers, but Blu-ray discs are more expensive to produce. Furthermore, for consumers there is no difference in quality between the standards.