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Blu-ray Disc Association Being Formed to Promote Format

19 May, 2004 By: Kurt Indvik

The Blu-ray Disc Founders group has announced plans to form the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) to help establish the format's standards and promote Blu-ray discs throughout the home entertainment, PC and consumer electronics (CE) industries as the next-generation, high-definition optical disc format of choice for packaged media, including storing movies, photos and other digital content.

The 13 original members of the ad hoc founder's group, formed in May 2002, will be reincorporated into the BDA and will begin the invitation process cultivating new members from the entertainment, PC, CE and IT industries to have a role in the development of the format. Applications will be available in late summer, and the first official meeting for the BDA is expected to take place sometime this fall, perhaps in October, according to a group spokesperson. Companies interested in the application process can visit the group's Web site here.

“We have had a huge amount of interest regarding Blu-ray disc from key industry leaders and key component manufacturers,” said Maureen Weber, GM of optical storage solutions for Hewlett Packard and a spokesperson for the founders' group. “We recognized the need to get strategic input from a broader group of companies than just the current founding members in order to really advance Blu-ray as the next-generation optical disc solution.”

.Weber said the group would be reaching out to Hollywood studios as “key strategic members” to help define the format moving forward as a delivery format for movies, but the group also sees a broad range of applications in video games and other interactive media, especially as the PC and CE markets continue to converge in the home media space, and thus will be casting a wide net for member companies. Weber said there would be four levels of membership for companies that wish to have varying levels of participation on strategic, technical specification, component and promotional issues.

The companies comprising the Blu-ray Disc Founders group include Dell, Hewlett Packard, Hitachi, LG Electronics, Mitsubishi Electric, Panasonic/Matsushita, Pioneer, Royal Philips Electronics, Samsung Electronics, Sharp, Sony, TDK and Thomson.

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