We’re yet to hear about players with built-in hard disk drives, but several are in the offing that have SD card slots which should do a similar job. Such players that promise BD Live functionality include Marantz’ BD8002 and Panasonic’s DMP-BD50. Specs on both maybe subject to change.
Blu-ray loading times
With Profile 1.1 on the market now, and Profile 1.0 players still capable of impressing most of us, there are a lot more important things to think about when buying a Blu-ray player than the various Profiles.
Build quality varies enormously, while disc loading times can be frustrating – we’ve even see a disc take over two minutes to load on some machines!
And Profile 3? It doesn’t exist yet, but it’s sure to come. We’re sure that gaming, online shopping and even phone calls will soon become possible from a Blu-ray player.
One thing’s for sure: there’s going to be a lot more to Blu-ray than high-definition movies – but it’s a fine place to start.
Getting to grips with BD Live
For a technology so long in development there's no doubt that initial forays by studios into the world of Profile 2.0/BD Live are disappointing.
Taking your Blu-ray experience online currently appears to consist of little more than crude community interaction and Java games.
The leader in online interaction is currently Entertainment In Video. The UK distributor included an online component in War, the Jet Lee/Jason Statham action movie.
Buried amid the special features is Yakuza Fighter, an extremely simplistic game, in which two animated characters face off for a 2D punch-up.
You don't actually control these as such, more program them with a series of moves. Once done, you press Enter and the pugilists perform.
The BD Live aspect involves uploading your win / lose stats and comparing them with other early adopters. When we uploaded our stats, only 145 other BD Live owners had bothered to register for the service. Hardly surprising as the game is very lame.
Another EIV title takes a different approach to Profile 2.0 technology. Saw 4 encourages viewers to Molog. Mologging involves adding your own commentary to the film, in the shape of overlaid boxes, balloons and visual effects.
Via an online interface, you have the opportunity to view other Mologs, the majority of which involve speech balloons with state things like 'Duh!' although there's at least one considered commentary available.
It's difficult to guess how such technology will develop; but for now it's clear that BD Live technology still has someway to go before it's ready for primetime.