HD DVD's demise means Sony's in the clear? Not so fast! Put away those champagne bottles! Bloomberg's here to shit on Sony's party, pointing out that all this doesn't mean smooth sailing by a damn sight. There are 176 companies in the Blu-ray Disc Association, including Sony competitors Samsung and Panasonic. They're not necessarily buddies! They're competing. This is business, not summer camp!
Interesting factoid: Before Sony released the PS3, HD DVD occupied 64 percent of HD format sales, and now Blu-ray accounts for 65 percent. The ironic bit: While Sony built up big Blu-ray support with the PS3, it doesn't solely own the technology. Sony must split royalties with other members of the Blu-ray association like Samsung and Panasonic — the same members Sony is battling with for market share! Says Morgan Stanley's Tokyo-based analyst Masahiro Ono:
Sony's Blu-ray hardware business model isn't very profitable. Even if it's profitable next year, we can't expect a high margin.
Bloomberg points out that Sony in the videotape format war, Sony's Betamax format lost to Victor Co.'s VHS. And what did that VHS win mean for Victor? Not much! Stock prices tumbled, its market share crumbled, and Victor isn't nearly what it was in 1980. That's right! Doom, doom, DOOM.
Blu-ray's Win May Fail [Bloomberg][Pic]