Why HD DVD vs Blu-ray is still a cold war

The battle to convince people that HD formats are the way to go, is only just beginning

The high definition format war is failing to heat up in North America, with most punters choosing regular DVD titles over HD DVD and Blu-ray ones.

Paramount announced today that it sold 190,000 HD DVD copies of the new Transformers movie in its first week of release. That compares to the 8.3 million copies which were sold in the same period on standard definition DVD.

HD discs: doomed formats?

But despite the numbers arguing otherwise, HD DVD-exclusive studio Paramount is hailing the figures as evidence that HD DVD is doing better than the rival Blu-ray format.

"[Transformers] rocketed past previous releases to become the fastest and best-selling day one high definition title on a single format," says Paramount. "[The HD DVD version] has sold over 190,000 HD DVDs in its first week making it the top-selling week one release on either high definition format as well as the best-selling HD DVD ever."

It's amazing how both the Blu-ray and the HD DVD camps are parading their woefully small sales figures as though they are actually significant. The DVD version of Transformers sold 44 times as many as the HD DVD version, which demonstrates what a battle the HD formats have in order to win over the general consumer.

HD's biggest competitor? It's DVD

Most HD movies are outsold even more severely by their DVD counterparts.

And while the figures in North America are looking bad, the battle to win over the hearts and minds of those of us in the UK and Europe is even worse.

We called the HD DVD Promotion Group Europe's PR department this morning to find out the HD DVD sales figures for Europe. They said they had none at present. Make of that what you will.

James Rivington

James was part of the TechRadar editorial team for eight years up until 2015 and now works in a senior position for TR's parent company Future. An experienced Content Director with a demonstrated history of working in the media production industry. Skilled in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), E-commerce Optimization, Journalism, Digital Marketing, and Social Media. James can do it all.