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Getting consumers excited about high-def

Janet Babin Feb 27, 2007

TEXT OF STORY

SCOTT JAGOW: Sony says it’s gonna drop the price of flat-screen TVs 20 percent this year.And it’s rolling out a new, cheaper Blu-ray DVD player. Janet Babin reports from our Innovations Desk at North Carolina public radio.


JANET BABIN: Sony’s original Blu-ray player is selling for about $1,000. This new version will be available by summer for $400 less.

The company’s hoping the lower price point will entice consumers to upgrade but the cost is still higher than Toshiba’s hi-def player in the HD-DVD format.

Ted Schadler with Forrester Research doesn’t think Sony’s lower price will attract more buyers. He says most people think their current DVD player looks great.

TED SCHADLER: So you really have to be convinced that these new high-definition DVD formats are worth it, they’re really worth bothering for. We believe consumers are gonna wait. They’re gonna wait and see which format wins.

Schadler says one format isn’t a lot better than the other, but more manufacturers are making Blu-ray and more movies are available on Blu-ray.

Still he says consumers buy electronics based on price. That might leave manufacturers in a race to the bottom.

I’m Janet Babin for Marketplace.

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