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Blu-ray Backer HP Throws Support to HD DVD

16 Dec, 2005 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Hewlett-Packard, heretofore an exclusive supporter of the Blu-ray Disc format, today said it would also support rival format HD DVD.

The switch by Palo Alto, Calif.-based HP is in apparent response to the Blu-ray Disc Association's (BDA) refusal to adopt iHD technology that allows greater interactivity on next-generation DVDs.

In October, HP formally requested BDA incorporate iHD and Mandatory Managed Copy, the latter that allows legal replications of video content, into the Blu-ray specification. The format association only approved Managed Copy. Both technologies are available on HD DVD.

“We're encouraged that BDA is adopting Managed Copy,” said Maureen Weber, general manager, personal storage business, HP. “Because HP wants to deliver the most user-friendly and cost-effective solution to our customers, we have decided to support both formats.”

Microsoft and Intel both back HD DVD due in part to iHD and Managed Copy. Observers have seen HP's desire to get the two technologies into Blu-ray as an attempt to sway Microsoft and Intel to switch support to Blu-ray.

Now, support by HP would appear to give HD DVD a much-needed boost prior to next month's 2006 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Both formats promise extensive demos and presentations at the confab.

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