Toshiba slashing HD DVD prices, but will it work?

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The fightback has begun in the HD wars, with HD DVD backer Toshiba slashing prices on its players to try and compete with its Blu-ray rivals. In the US, its cheapest HD DVD player will now cost $149 – half its previous official price – while even its high-end player has seen a big cut to $299.

Meanwhile, in the UK, Toshiba’s high-end HD-EP30 HD DVD player has been spotted on sale for £179. However, the rhetoric from Toshiba’s Yoshi Uchiyama in the US begs a few questions:

“While price is one of the consideration elements for the early adopter, it is a deal-breaker for the mainstream consumer. Consumer sales this holiday season have proven that the consumer awareness of the HD DVD format has been elevated and pricing is the most critical determinant in consumer’s purchase decision of the next generation HD DVD technology.”

Surely as important is consumers’ fear over being lumbered with a next-gen Betamax, and even more immediately, the availability of a big catalogue of films to watch? In which context, the price drop can be seen as an attempt to shift as many HD DVD players as possible before Warner stops selling HD DVD movies later this year…

Toshiba US announcement

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Stuart Dredge

One thought on “Toshiba slashing HD DVD prices, but will it work?

  • So their new tactic to try and win the war is to sell the players cheaper than BluRay one?

    Exactly the same piece of marketing genius that has failed them over the last 2 years yet now with the loss of Warner, HBO & New Line there is even less reason for customers to go HD-DVD.

    I dont know about the rest of the world but over here in the UK HD-DVD is seen as the lower quality, cheaper format with BluRay being the more exclusive premium product. All the bad news circulating about HD-DVD and them now slashing prices to flog off players is just making it seem even worse.

    They have lost and I hope this latest move is just Toshiba getting rid of their stock before they concede defeat because the worst thing for business and consumers alike would be for them to drag this on and on.

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