COMMENT: "300" sales show Blu-ray ahead, but still along way to go

Warner Bros is claiming that new movie 300 has "set new standards in the sales of high definition formats", with the total number of HD units sold on the day of release the highest on record, eclipsing the cash sales generated by Casino Royale; previously the most popular when launched alongside the PS3 earlier in 2007.

So has the next generation high-definition format finally become a format of choice over DVD? Well not exactly.

According to the sales figures from Warner Bros, only 6564 copies on both HD DVD and Blu-ray were sold on day one.

Look at this in perspective to total day one DVD sales and it represents just 5% of total sales showing that the formats still have a long way to go before becoming the mainstream format.

It's encouraging for early adopters that HD is gaining pace, but the numbers show that the format, and the war, has a long way to go.

So is it Blu-ray or HD DVD people are buying? Warner is the only studio to back both formats, and its also interesting to see who is buying which format.

Breaking down the day one figures even more it would suggest that the Blu-ray camp will be singing from the rooftops.

Blu-ray outsold 300 HD DVD sales by 2.5 to 1 suggesting that HD DVD isn't the format of choice after all, if you were to base it on this movie alone.

But, and this is the big but, 300, created by Zak Snyder and based on the novel by Frank Miller, is very much a male 20-something movie with plenty of action, little storyline and great visual graphics that will look stunning in high-def.

It is also something that is likely to appeal to gamers, and hence PS3 owners, perhaps skewing the sales figures towards a PlayStation 3 owners.

So what does this all show us? That Warner Bros may be claiming this breaks all records, but the format war and its journey in becoming the format of choice, whether it's Blu-ray or HD DVD still has a long, long way to go.


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