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Microsoft Corp.’s chairman Bill Gates said in an interview that the copy-protection scheme on the Blu-ray discs was very anti-consumer, which would make them harder to on the personal computers. This partly explains Microsoft’s decision to support HD DVD format instead of Blu-ray format recently.

“The key issue here is that the protection scheme under Blu-ray is very anti-consumer and there’s not much visibility of that. The inconvenience is that the [movie] studios got too much protection at the expense consumers and it won’t work well on PCs. You won’t be able to play movies and do software in a flexible way,” Bill Gates said in an interview with The Daily Prestonian.

Mr. Gates said that physical format of the Blu-ray was okay, but copyright protection scheme was not fine for the PC. He indicated that once the Blu-ray group fixes that scheme to be more consumer friendly, “that would be fine”.

The chairman of the world’s largest software maker also said that the Blu-ray and HD DVD were the last physical formats and in future removable media will be substituted by streamed content as well as delivery of the content via the Internet.

“Understand that this is the last physical format there will ever be. Everything's going to be streamed directly or on a hard disk. So, in this way, it's even unclear how much this one counts,” Mr. Gates said.

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 as well as support a variety of additional features, including advanced copy-protection mechanisms, but Blu-ray discs are more expensive to produce. The HD DVD is pushed aggressively by Toshiba 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 and Panasonic, the world’s No.1 and No.3 makers of electronics. Among Hollywood studios HD is supported by Warner Bros. Studios, New Line Cinema, Paramount Pictures and Universal Pictures, whereas Sony Pictures, Walt Disney and Twentieth Century Fox endorse Blu-ray.

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Discussion started: 10/18/05 02:11:50 AM
Latest comment: 07/20/06 01:24:53 AM
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Who is he kidding, "last physical formats" nobody I know in the real world uses the internet for anything more than browsing and emails. I know about 200 people who have and will never "stream" anything, including myself.
TechHeads live in a fantasy world especially rich ones, where they think everyone can afford the kind of things they can. None of my contacts bar a couple even have broadband let alone be able to stream movies. Several of them are already starting to downgrade their internet connections as the Net is becoming too commercialised. I have 250kb DSL and that is the fastest I will ever go because a) the cost and b) there is nothing free that needs higher speeds than that.
Here in the UK a lot of people haven't even made the move to DVD and are still buying VHS let alone HD DVD.
I think that people like Mr. Gates should go live in the real world for a while, the world where people care more about saving money than getting the latest and greatest. For this reason it will be the cheapest method that wins out not the best quality.
I will be sticking with plain DVD for years to come as I already have over 1000 DVDs and I don't plan on replacing them for the same just to have them on different kind of disk.
Wake up!
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 10/18/05 07:31:31 AM]
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Tickle, perhaps if you hadn't purchased "over 1000 DVDs," you'd be able to afford more than slow DSL. I don't know many people who can't afford broadband (musicians and aspiring actors, maybe), and I know even fewer who refuse to let go of VHS. They'd have to either be 80 years old or just indignantly stubborn. I think you'll find as compression algorithms continue to evolve and bandwidth becomes cheaper for content owners, we'll begin to see a slow migration toward the death of physical media. It's just a couple more steps past on-demand cable television-- which is already here.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 10/18/05 04:46:19 PM]
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