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Despite of reports regarding finalization of triple-layer HD DVD media with DVD Forum, there are also claims that contradict this information and state that the “approved” standard is “preliminary”. Therefore, commercial introduction of 51GB HD DVD media slips into late 2008 if not 2009.

The single-sided triple-layer 51GB HD DVD disc that was reportedly approved by the DVD Forum is just a preliminary version (version 1.9) rather than a final one, according to “industry sources in Taiwan”, reports DigiTimes web-site. Earlier this month it was revealed that Toshiba-developed 51GB HD DVD had been ratified by DVD Forum organization, however, this may not be true.

It is also reported that even if the final version of the triple-layer HD DVD standard comes out “soon”, it would take one to three quarters before the start of production of corresponding consumer electronics hardware, implying that currently available HD DVD players and drives may not be able to playback or read the new discs with 51GB capacity.

The new 51GB HD DVD ROM disc has a three-layer structure with each layer storing 17GB of data, which is an advancement in capacity over current ROM discs, which hold 15GB of data in each layer of a single-sided disc. Continued improvement in disc mastering technology has achieved further minimization in the recording pit, supporting a further boost in capacity to 17GB in single layer and a full 51GB on a single-sided triple-layer disc. Toshiba has confirmed the disc structure and its successful operation earlier this year.

Official comments from DVD Forum were not available at press time.

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