Hot on the heels of news that Sony has cut $100 off the price of its latest Blu-ray DVD player comes the announcement from Toshiba, developer of the rival HD-DVD format for next-generation discs, that all its laptops will next year incorporate HD-DVD disk drives.
Sony and Toshiba are locked in a standards battle over next-generation DVDs. The two companies attempted to collaborate in 2005 on a unified standard, but talks broke down when each party insisted that their format was the best way forward.
Industry analysts suggest that the popularity of next-generation DVDs will not take off until the issue of a standard format is resolved, ending confusion among consumers similar to that caused by the VHS/Betamax war of the 1980s.
Toshiba's laptop move is the latest tactic in the standards battle, and follows Sony's incorporation of Blu-ray drives in its PlayStation 3 game consoles.
Toshiba vice president Hisatsugu Nonaka told a news conference that putting HD-DVD drives in laptops would meet the demand of consumers "to watch their favourite movies in high definition on the road".
Meanwhile, Toshiba announced what it said was the world's first slim HD DVD-RW drive for notebook PCs.
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