After weeks of trialling its new HD capabilities YouTube has officially launched its high-def channel.
Users clicking on the newly added "watch in HD" option will automatically see the videos play in widescreen (16:9 aspect).
It’s fitting that after a roller-coaster year for Blu-ray the high-def format should end 2009 on a high AND a low.
With sales in the US encouraging, a poll by Zogby International shows that Blu-ray players are one of the most wanted holiday gifts this season for HDTV owners.
The high-def players are only beaten by consumers looking for a second HDTV.
XStreamHD has successfully tested a transport system that delivers Full HD movies, music, and games directly to subscriber homes via satellite.
The system, tested on the AMC-16 satellite at 85 degrees west longitude, will be able to provide content throughout North America.
Netflix has reached its target of 500,000 Blu-ray subscribers ahead of schedule.
The retailer’s chief financial officer Barry McCarthy said subscribers had added the option of paying an extra USD $1 to receive Blu-ray Disc titles at a quicker rate than Netflix forecast in October.
Blu-ray players bucked generally weak Black Friday sales in the US – helped considerable by average prices dropping to USD $200, according to DisplaySearch.
Stripping out sales of Sony’s PlayStation 3, the researchers report that US Blu-ray Disc player revenue "more than tripled from a year earlier" during the week of Thanksgiving and Black Friday .
There are undoubtedly pros and cons to having a single optical disc that can pack in 400GB of data – movies, music…whatever you can throw at it.
Pioneer is preparing for release a 16-layer Blu-ray disc that not only offers this colossal storage capacity but will play back on most current standalone Blu-ray players, including the Sony PlayStation 3.
Blockbuster may be hinting at offering its download service on Blu-ray players – Netflix is actually doing it.
From next week two Samsung Blu-ray players are to provide Netflix videos in high definition.
YouTube has finally moved to a default widescreen player with an HD-friendly 16:9 aspect ratio.
Perhaps not coincidentally, the announcement follows the video sharing giant’s recent decision to start hosting full-length Hollywood movies.
Not that anyone will be complaining.
The latest survey from SmithGeiger shows that HDTV owners would rather watch movies on Blu-ray Disc than stream content directly to their TV.
Well, hardly any surprise there. There’s never been any doubt about the phenomenal quality of Blu-ray images – but that still doesn’t seem to be translating into sales.
Even with price drops in the US of between USD $200 and $300, the HD players aren’t rushing off the shelves.
Online movie rental giant Netflix is finally offering Mac users its instant watching service.
Windows users have been able to watch movies and TV episodes instantly since early 2007.
The upgraded service will initially only work on Macs with Intel chips – but the Los Gatos, California-based online DVD rental pioneer said that was around 70 per cent of their Mac subscribers.