Blu-ray Disc News News and Views from the Blu-ray Disc Association 09 January 2009 Contents in this issue • Blu-ray Disc re-writes record books in U.S. CES Special Issue – Day Two • Panasonic extends award-winning Blu-ray Disc player range • Sharp introduces world’s first LCD TVs with integrated Blu-ray Disc player • JVC launches Blu-ray Disc home theater-in-a-box in U.S. • Acer enables Blu-ray Disc playback with Corel WinDVD • AudioDev approved as European Blu-ray Disc test center Blu-ray Disc is proving to be the most popular and fastest establishing platform Blu-ray Disc re- ever in the history of the U.S. entertainment industry. This was one of the main writes record messages presented by the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) at a packed press conference on the opening day of the 2009 International Consumer Electronics books in the U.S. Show in Las Vegas yesterday. Since Blu-ray Disc’s inception in June 2006, some 10.7 million Blu-ray capable players have been shipped in the U.S. (source: DisplaySearch). By comparison, “We are on a growth path that 5.4 million DVD players had been shipped three years into its launch (source: CEA will see Blu-ray entertainment Market Research). mainstream entertainment markets in the U.S. during “Already, in just our third Historic Adoption of Key Home 2009. Within the BDA we are year, Blu-ray has Entertainment Technologies working tremendously hard to achieved more than Penetration of U.S. Homes at 3rd Year make this technology available seven per cent market 10% to the broadest community of penetration here in the 8% entertainment enthusiasts. We U.S.,” commented Andy 6% 4% look forward to what will be a Parsons, Chairman of 2% 0% tremendously exciting and the BDA U.S. TV Color TV VHS CD DVD HDTV BD Player/PS3 perhaps unprecedented period Promotions Committee. Note: BD Player/PS3 value counts households – multiple device households counted once ahead of us.” “This compares with just Source: Adams Media Research over four per cent for Andy Parsons DVD, less than two per Chairman cent for CD and less BDA U.S. Promotions than one per cent for color television itself at comparable stages of their evolution. Committee These are really significant figures and illustrate the ability Blu-ray possesses to revolutionize the home entertainment industry.” This exponential growth in hardware sales is supported by very strong sales results in the software sector. Parsons announced to the news conference that nearly 1,100 Blu-ray movie titles are now available. With the release of Dark Knight by Warner Home Video the BD format has its first title to surpass one million sales. In the U.S. the first two million disc sales month was achieved last October. This was immediately followed by more than three million BD Blu-ray Title Sales By Year movie sales in November and more than eight million sales in December. Since Blu-ray’s inception more than More than 30 million Blu-ray Discs sold since inception 24.09 M 30 million Blu-ray movie discs have been sold. In 2008, 25 24.09 million discs were sold (source: The Redhill Group) 20 More than fourfold representing a more than fourfold increase on the increase compared 15 to 2007 previous year. 10 5.67 M 5 Parsons pointed out to the audience of journalists that 0.37 M whilst these figures are impressive, they represent just 0 2006 2007 2008 the start of a revolution that will transform living rooms Source: The Redhill Group across the U.S., and indeed the world. He highlighted the potential impact of BD-Live – a sophisticated Blu-ray interactivity platform that transforms the entertainment experience from passive viewing to totally immersive interactivity. There are currently more than 75 BD-Live movie titles available in the U.S. and many more are in the pipeline. There are nine BD-Live capable player models on the market today and a further five new players have been announced at CES. This means that when PLAYSTATION 3 is taken into account more than 75 per cent of all Blu-ray players sold in the U.S. are BD-Live capable. Blu-ray Disc is a format that is in the early days of its evolution and numerous companies and organisations are working with the technology to enhance the consumer entertainment experience. Andy Parsons identified Digital Copy and 3D technologies as good illustrations of where this is happening. “We are on a growth path that will see Blu-ray enter mainstream entertainment markets in the U.S. during 2009,” concluded Andy Parsons. “Within the BDA we are working hard to make this technology available to the broadest community of entertainment enthusiasts. We look forward to what will be a tremendously exciting and perhaps unprecedented period ahead of us.” Andy Parsons To find out more about any of the topics reported here, or to contact a spokesperson, please email email@example.com Panasonic At CES, Panasonic has introduced the successors to last year's award winning extends award DMP-BD35 and DMP-BD55 players, as well as presenting the world's first Blu-ray- VHS dual player. All three of the new Blu-ray players - DMP-BD60, DMP-BD80, winning Blu-ray DMP-BD70V - combine high quality images with enhanced networking functions, Disc player range including VIERA Cast's improved internet functionality that provides access to Amazon VOD's huge selection of titles. Continuing its commitment to producing products that stress ease of use, the 2009 line of Blu-ray Disc players continue to incorporate VIERA Link, allowing the consumer to operate their audio/video components, via HDMI, with one remote. And, in keeping with Panasonic's pledge to reduce the planet's carbon footprint, the new Blu-ray players have been designed to reduce power consumption. Each of the three models employs the PHL Reference Chroma Processor Plus. Developed in collaboration with Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory, this high image processing technology reproduces clear, vivid colors that are faithful to the original film. Recognizing that audio is important to the overall entertainment experience, Panasonic's three 2009 Blu-ray Disc players feature a High Definition audio decoder (Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio Essential) to take advantage of the exceptionally high quality 7.1 channel surround sound now integrated in Blu-ray Discs. The DMP-BD70V distinguishes itself as the world's first dual deck VHS-Blu-ray player, providing the consumer with a video product that features multi-format playback allowing the user to play VHS, CD, DVD and 1080p High Definition Blu-ray Discs. The BD70V allows for premium 1080p up- conversion for all video formats. VIERA CAST technology, introduced in Panasonic's PZ850 2008 VIERA Plasma, is now available in Panasonic's 2009 Blu- ray players. The internet enabled technology lets the consumer access the Panasonic DMP-BD60 internet without the need of either an external box or a PC and enjoy the entertainment value provided by such targeted sites as Amazon VOD, with an extensive library of streamed titles, YouTube, Google's Picasa Web Album, Bloomberg and a weather channel. "With the expansion of the unique VIERA Cast functionality and the introduction of the industry's first dual VHS-Blu-ray deck, Panasonic's 2009 line cements our position as technology leaders and places Panasonic in the forefront of the Blu-ray arena," said Richard Simone, Director, Panasonic, the Entertainment Group. "Panasonic was the first company to produce a Blu-ray player with Bonus View and the first to incorporate BD Live functionality into a stand alone player. Now we are the first to bring to market a dual VHS-Blu ray player. When coupled with a Panasonic HDTV, Blu-ray gives the consumer the essential 1080p High Definition experience." The Blu-ray players also provide 1080/24p output, thereby reproducing cinema images from a Blu-ray Disc and DVD in their original 24p form with no need for conversion. This allows the user to enjoy cinema images in the same format used in cinema with a 1080/24p compatible TV. Complimenting the HD audio codecs the three Blu-ray players feature 96kHz surround re-master, a function that enhances the sound quality of CDs and other sources, and even improves the quality of the multi-channel audio data on Blu-ray Discs and DVDs. The DMP-BD80 further enhances the audio experience with 7.1 channel analog out to produce true 7.1 surround sound, thereby affording the consumer a home theater environment that rivals the movie theater. In order to obtain a reduction in power consumption the 2009 Blu-ray players use Auto Power Stand-By, a function that automatically turns off the player when you return to TV operation using the VIERA Link menu. The BD60 consumes 16% less power in standby mode than last year's model, the DMP-BD35. For more information, please respond to Jeff Samuels, firstname.lastname@example.org or Alix Dunn, email@example.com . Sharp introduces At CES, Sharp has introduced the world’s first AQUOS LCD TV Series with a built- in Blu-ray Disc player, for a convenient all-in-one home theater solution. The Full- world’s first LCD HD 1080p AQUOS BD series, which includes the 52-inch class (52-1/32” diagonal) TVs with LC-52BD80U, 46-inch class (45-63/64” diagonal) LC-46BD80U, 42-inch class (42- 1/64” diagonal) LC-42BD80U, 37-inch class (37” diagonal) LC-37BD60U and 32- integrated Blu- inch class (31-35/64” diagonal) LC-32BD60U screen class sizes, combines the ray Disc player ultimate high definition television with the ultimate high definition content format with a side-loading multi-slot for Blu-ray, DVD and CD content. The series offers a single-step operation feature that turns on the TV and activates play when a BD disc is inserted. In addition, the BD series features a newly developed Advanced Super View (ASV) Superlucent panel for a dramatically bright and crisp picture with reduced reflection and a new AQUOS Pure Mode for convenient optimized viewing of Blu-ray titles. A new elegant “AQUOS Blue” design includes a subtle blue accent at the bottom of the frame and a swivel stand for viewing convenience. “We created this series to offer consumers a product that provides the same high-quality, clear picture they’ve come to expect from a Sharp AQUOS, but with the added convenience of a Blu-ray player for a unique combination solution that allows playback of the latest HD Blu-ray movies,” said Bob Scaglione, senior vice president and group manager, Product and Marketing Group, Sharp Electronics Corporation. “This product is a one-stop, stylish Simple and stylish – LCD TV with built-in Blu-ray Disc player home theater and the built-in side- loading Blu-ray slot is also a space- saver for style-conscious consumers, eliminating the need for a separate box and extra cables.” Sharp’s new ASV Superlucent panel applies an ultra-smooth finish that minimizes gloss while intensifying panel brightness and contrast. The AQUOS Pure Mode automatically senses the Blu-ray disc content and intelligently adjusts display settings such as aspect ratio to optimize the movie image. The LC-52BD80U, LC- 46BD80U and LC-42BD80U further improve picture quality with Fine Motion Enhanced technology for 120Hz Frame Rate Conversion, a 10-bit panel for Deep Color compatibility and “dejudder” technology that results in the smooth reproduction of film content. All five models offer fast pixel response time, ensuring that viewers never miss a detail of High Definition content. These Full-HD 1080p models are very fully featured, with four HDMI inputs on the LC-52BD80U, LC-46BD80U and LC-42BD80U and three on the LC-37BD60U and LC-32BD60U, as well as two component video inputs, all of which are 1080p compatible. The HDMI terminals all have 24p input capability for high-quality Blu- ray video processing. A true high-definition TV, the models house a built-in ATSC and QAM tuner for access to DTV channels. The units also feature an RS-232C input for custom installations and a PC input so the TV serves a dual purpose as a PC monitor. For more information or to contact a spokesperson, please respond to Melissa Non, firstname.lastname@example.org or Chris Loncto, email@example.com JVC launches At CES, JVC has introduced the company’s first Blu-ray home-theater-in-a-box Blu-ray Disc system, a three-piece package that includes a sound bar speaker system, wireless subwoofer and Blu-ray player, providing a complete High Definition home home-theater-in- entertainment package designed to complement virtually any HDTV. a-box in U.S. The new JVC TH-SB100 is a 3.1-channel system designed to make it easy to upgrade to a full HD home theater, and offers such advanced features as BD Live compatibility. The system’s powered soundbar is designed to nestle unobtrusively below a television, while the subwoofer, thanks to its wireless technology, offers the kind of placement flexibility that design-conscious consumers appreciate. The included Blu-ray player, in addition to its BD-Live compatibility when used with USB memory, also offers AVCHD playback, the popular high definition camcorder format. The simple and cleanly-styled sound bar has an internal amplifier that provides 30 watts each to the left, right and center channels. Left and right channels are each handled by a pair of three-inch woofers and half-inch tweeter, while a single three-inch woofer handles the center channel. The eight-inch wireless subwoofer is driven by 100 watts. In addition, the system offers Dolby Digital and DTS decoding, plus six-mode digital signal processing. The TH-SB100’s Blu-ray player offers compatibility with the full array of formats, including AVCHD. Connections include HDMI ver.1.3 with Deep Color and x.v.Color, USB Host, LAN for BD Live, component and composite video outputs, and analog, optical and coaxial audio outputs. With BD-Live compatibility the player can be connected to the Internet to access BD Live 2.0 features, including easy firmware updates, new movie trailers, updated subtitles, online shopping, chat and gaming. The TH-SB100 is designed to complement the latest generation of sleekly styled flat panel TVs. The glossy black low-profile Blu-ray player has illuminated function keys, while the black soundbar likewise features a slim design. For more information, or to contact a spokesperson, please respond to Chelsea Vander Groef, firstname.lastname@example.org Acer enables Blu- At CES, Corel Corporation has announced that Acer will bundle Corel WinDVD, ray Disc playback video and DVD playback software, with its TravelMate commercial notebooks and eMachines consumer notebooks. with Corel WinDVD Through this powerful new offering, users of all skill levels will be able to easily playback and enjoy standard-definition videos and DVDs. TravelMate professionals will also enjoy the added benefit of being able to play back Blu-ray Disc content, providing High Definition quality and all-in-one productivity. "We are delighted to partner with Acer to provide users with a complete playback solution tailored to their specific needs,” said Jeff Hastings, President and General Manager, Digital Media at Corel. "By combining Corel WinDVD with Acer's TravelMate and eMachines notebooks, we are making it easy for a variety of users to play back and enjoy their videos, DVDs and Blu-ray Discs in style.” "Corel WinDVD is reputed for its superior quality, stability and performance on video and disc playback,” said David Lee, Associate Vice President of Mobile Computing Business Unit, Acer Inc. "Thus, we are pleased to incorporate the WinDVD software into our notebook solutions and empower our customers with an enhanced media playback experience on the move." Select Acer TravelMate notebooks and the full line of Acer eMachines notebooks are now available bundled with Corel WinDVD. For more information, please respond to Amie Hoffner, Jeff Hastings email@example.com AudioDev On December 30, Swedish technology company AudioDev was approved by the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) as an official Blu-ray Disc testing center for BD- approved as ROM Media (Data/Video). A Blu-ray Disc testing center has a very important task, European Blu- as it verifies whether new BD-products are up to the high quality standards set up by the BDA. Before a licensed disc replicator can produce and sell BD-media, the ray Disc testing mechanical, optical and electrical properties of the discs have to be approved by center an official BD testing center. "We have been working with measurement and verification of Blu-ray Discs for a very long time, even before the format received its official name. With this in mind, the decision to assume the role of official testing center was a logical next step for us" says Magnus Wikstrand, Senior Measurement Development Manager at AudioDev. AudioDev has been a contributing member of the BDA since 2003 and the company has during this time taken an active role in the development of the specifications for the Blu-ray Disc format. Through this approval, AudioDev will also act in the Verification Service Group (VSG) within the BDA. The VSG ensures the alignment between the different BD testing centers and defines their logistics and technical procedures and also organizes market inspections in order to maintain the quality of the products. The approval of AudioDev TestCenter as official testing center for Magnus Wikstrand in the Test Center BD once again shows that AudioDev has a strong commitment to support customers and partners in regards to the Blu-ray Disc format. The approval is also an important step forward in terms of the recognition of the AudioDev’s CATS- and ETA-testers when it comes to measurement performance. From January 1st, 2009, AudioDev TestCenter is the official Blu-ray Disc testing center for BD-ROM (Data/Video) in Europe. For more information, please respond to Marianne Semevi, firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here The Blu-ray Disc Association supports the production of this electronic newsletter. 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