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Wal-Mart Chooses Blu-ray Disc over HD DVD

posted on by Egan Loo
World's largest retail chain to carry only BD, standard DVD by June

Wal-Mart, the largest retail chain in the world, has announced that it "will offer only Blu-ray [Disc] movies and hardware machines, as well as standard definition movies and DVD players, and up converts." It will begin phasing out HD DVD, Blu-ray's high-definition disc format competitor, in less than 30 days and finish by June. The press release confirms a blog entry by Susan Chronister, a wholesale buyer for Wal-Mart's movie category. Gary Stevenson, senior vice president, Home Entertainment, Wal-Mart, U.S., cites the customers' "clear preference toward Blu-ray products and movies with their purchases." Wal-Mart joins Blockbuster, Best Buy, and Netflix in either phasing out HD DVD or announcing a preference for Blu-ray. All major anime distributors in North America have selected Blu-ray Disc or have been offering anime titles on both high-definition formats.

According to the Hollywood Reporter entertainment trade newspaper, Toshiba America Consumer Products (the primary backer of HD DVD) has not officially made a decision to end the format. However, Jodi Sally, the group's vice president of marketing, said, "Given the market developments in the past month, Toshiba will continue to study the market impact and the value proposition for consumers, particularly in light of our recent price reductions on all HD DVD players."

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