THE advance of technology is relentless and is already preparing to retire one of its most recent creations, the DVD.
This has opened a complicated struggle for its replacement, for which two incompatible formats are competing: Blu-ray from Sony, which will be on sale in March; and HD DVD from Toshiba, which will be on sale in Spain this month. The same thing happened at the end of the 80s in the video market with VHS and BETA (and for a short time Video 2000) all competing, of which VHS was the final winner. The new machines will have a double optic system which, in spite of the initial forecasts from Sony, will also be capable of reading the current CDs and DVDs. However the red laser, which the existing machines use, will be changed for a blue laser, which is much more precise. The new medium will be capable of holding five times more information. In spite of the quality of the DVD appearing good enough for the user, both companies say that the new format is “an immense leap in quality which can be appreciated by watching it” and justify marketing it by pointing to the demand for high definition caused by “the amount of high definition televisions being sold and the arrival of digital televison”. This was explained by the head of Sony Blu-ray in Spain, Jorge Juan Gallego. To deal with the new image quality demanded by larger flat screens, “this medium which will store five times more information on the same size disc” has been manufactured, said Gallego.

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