China implements own version of HD DVD format, vaguely compatible


hddvd.pngThe ongoing war between the two main high definition disc formats — HD DVD and Blu-ray — may just have become a little more complicated, as China has adopted its own version of the HD DVD format.

With China becoming an increasingly powerful economic force, this could have notable implications for the disc format.

Developed by the Optical Memory National Engineering Research Centre (OMNERC), CH DVD (China High Definition DVD) is very similar to the original HD DVD format, though has additional copy-protection features aimed at reducing illegal disc copying in the region.

Interestingly, both formats are compatible enough that any player with the right software can read both types of disc. This probably won’t do much for illegal exports of discs from China to the West, though regional coding, if properly implemented, might help.

It’s never that simple, though, as China and Taiwan have also been looking at red laser-based technology for high definition content. In addition, CHLG has lent its support to Blu-ray, so that format isn’t being ignored.

And all that’s before we’ve discussed HD VMD. The format war continues.


Andy Merrett
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