One of the big players in the home entertainment hardware industry finally worked up the courage to announce a dual-format HD DVD/Blu-ray disc player.

LG will officially launch the player next week at CES in Las Vegas, and until then will not release details like technical specifications or pricing.

Some reports say that the player will be released as early as the first quarter of this year in the US.

LG said in a statement that it believes its player will end the confusion and inconvenience of competing high-definition disc formats. It has long been a supporter of the Blu-ray format, backed by Sony, but appears to be straddling both sides now.

NEC announced in November that it had created a chip that was compatible with both Blu-ray and HD DVD, so it's possible that this is what will run the new LG player. The chip was said to cost about the same a single-format chip, ensuring that a hybrid player would still be affordable.