Friday, March 03, 2006

Andy Parsons doesn't get it

I found a strange quote in a recent article in the New York Times regarding the whole Blu-ray vs. HD-DVD format war. Andy Parsons, Senior VP at Pioneer and a spokesman for the Blu-ray camp said this about the idea of putting the next gen DVD drives in computers:
"DVD's are about movies and people watch them in their living rooms. How many people actually use their computer drives to sit and watch movies?"
Maybe this was taken waaay out of context, or perhaps he's just being sarcastic. Maybe the real quote is:
"[I think that it'd be crazy to assume that] DVD's are [only] about movies and [that] people [only] watch them in their living rooms. [I mean, I would never say:] 'How many people actually use their computer drives to sit and watch movies?'"
After all, a big part of the Blu-ray push is the PS3, which uses the increased capacity to play games, not movies. I can also imagine that computer people would be pretty excited to take advantage of the 25 gigabytes of space that the disc could afford them, provided the discs didn't cost too much and that they were easy enough to use.

In a cursory search, I came upon this statistic:
  • 2002
    • 17 million DVD-Video players shipped in the U.S. (Installed base of 43,718,000.)
    • Over 75 million DVD-ROM drives in the U.S.
    • Over 140 million DVD-ROM drives worldwide.
I was looking for some stats on the sales and use of the media (DVD-Videos vs. DVD-ROMs), but this is illustrative enough: DVD-ROM drives outsold DVD-Video drives by almost 450%.

I may just not get it, but that sounds like crazy talk to me.



Blogger Suga Shane said...

dont forget that almost every computer now a days comes with a dvd drive. people dont really even have a choice.

In actuality, we would have to take a sample poll of how many use the computer dvd to watch movies and also how many actually prefer it over the tv based dvd player.

one example is this. My uncle's company employs 400 people. we have over 400 computers. all of them are dells and all of them came with a dvd/cd-rw drive. I am willing to bet NONE of them have ever been used to watch a DVD.

maybe we should also see how many of those drives came in a laptop and how many people use the laptop for dvd viewing. im sure the number here is higher, especially for those that like to travel and take the laptop along.

Fri Feb 22, 02:21:00 PM PST  
Blogger brad77 said...

Thanks for your comment, el sucko. The point I was trying to make was that movies are only a small part of the reason you'd use a DVD-ROM drive. A lot of the software that you'd buy nowadays comes on DVD-ROM discs. Anyone who'd ever backup data to a disc-based medium would certainly prefer the larger capacity DVD-R to a CD-R. Using a Blu-ray-R disc in lieu of the DVD-R seems like a no-brainer to me.

It's not about whether or not one prefers to watch DVD's on the computer vs. the TV. If it were, he'd be right on. I never watch DVD's on my computer/laptop, but I certainly use the DVD drive quite a bit.

Mr. Parson's comment discounting the fact that Blu-ray could (or should) be used for anything other than movies seems shortsighted to me.

A number that I'd be interested is a variation on your example: How many of those people ever used the DVD drive for anything (not just watching movies)?

Fri Feb 22, 04:59:00 PM PST  

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