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Japanese Manufacturer Bows DivX File-Compression DVD Player

5 Nov, 2004 By: Erik Gruenwedel

I-O Data Device, a Kanazawa, Japan-based electronics manufacturer, this month will begin selling worldwide a high-definition DVD player for about $250.

The AVeL LinkPlayer2 includes file-compression technology from DivXNetworks, a San Diego-based company that makes next-generation file storage software using the standard red-laser format found in current DVD discs and early versions of HD-DVD.

The company's technology offers better compression and smaller file sizes at equivalent levels of quality with comparable software (Windows Media 9) from Microsoft, which makes it easier to transfer from online or burn to a disc, according to Tom Huntington, director of marketing with DivX.

“It's essentially a third format, although there is no reason it couldn't be [associated] with one of the other formats,” Huntington said. “If we were part of the specification, it would be great.”

DivX is a member of the DVD Forum, the intra-industry consortium attempting to set standards between HD-DVD and competitor, Blu-ray Disc, for next-generation DVD software and hardware products.

And what would happen if the industry adopted Blu-ray?

“It wouldn't change our current strategy, which is to try and propagate the DivX HD technology that allows someone to create an HD file on the computer,” Huntington said. “We have a number of devices coming out that allow that file to be played on their HD TV.”

He said the current dilemma between HD-DVD and Blu-ray specifications applies primarily to premium content such as movies.

“Fixed media would come out in a new format, but there are lots of opportunities for HD content, including user-created content from HD cameras that we could facilitate,” Huntington said.

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