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Survey's are out! HD-DVD or Blu-Ray, Who Came Out On Top??

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Old 07-24-2006, 08:18 AM   #1
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Default Survey's are out! HD-DVD or Blu-Ray, Who Came Out On Top??

LOL...Naturally, HD-DVD won Toshibas, Blu-Ray won Sony's...

Ipsos Vantis, a market research firm which predicts consumer trends, released the results of a survey last week which forecast that consumers will overwhelmingly choose HD-DVD as the format of choice in the next-generation DVD wars. The survey reported that, if all studios supported both formats, consumers were more than seven times more likely to buy an HD-DVD player than a competing Blu-ray player.

However, the survey contradicts the finding of a survey conducted by Penn, Schoen and Berland Associates last summer which predicted consumers were over three times more likely to choose Blu-ray than HD-DVD.

So what explains the differences between the two surveys? A change in attitudes? A non-representative sample of consumers? As it turns out, it may be a process of "education."

HD-DVD is championed by Toshiba, NEC, and Sanyo, with backing from Microsoft and Intel. Blu-Ray's consumer electronics list includes Sony, Panasonic, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Pioneer and LG Electronics with PC backing from Dell, HP, and Apple Computer. Most analysts see the competition as too close to call. But the two surveys say otherwise.

The survey conducted by Ipsos Vantis, commissioned by Toshiba, predicted consumers would overwhelmingly choose HD-DVD rather than Blu-ray. The survey took a sample of 1,341 U.S. adults and screened them down to 469 people who either owned an HDTV or planned on buying one within a year.

The respondents were then "educated," as if they would be making a purchase decision. Not surprisingly, much of the data Ipsos Vantis provided in the survey was received with guidance from Toshiba, said Stephen Bohnet, senior vice president at Ipsos Vantis.

Bohnet said that the screening process was done to narrow respondents down to a "relevant universe" of consumers who would make up the buying volume for HD players. Representatives also felt the education process was necessary to bring respondents up to date on the players and feed them information they would have at buying time. Respondents were shown several concept screens detailing the price, benefits, availability, and titles of both players and asked questions based on two scenarios: the first scenario imagined that all entertainment studios will support both formats, while the second imagined a split between studios.

In response to the question "Which statement best describes how likely you would be to buy an HD-DVD player," 57 percent said that they would definitely or probably buy an HD-DVD player, versus 8 percent for Blu-ray, when both formats where supported by all studios.

When asked "Which statement best describes how you feel about the value of an HD-DVD player," nearly 57 percent of respondents indicated that HD-DVD was a "very good" or "fairly good" value, versus 14 percent for Blu-ray.

But another survey commissioned by the Blu-ray Disc Association found that 58 percent of the 1,200 consumers they questioned preferred Blu-ray versus the 16 percent who preferred HD-DVD. The same poll found that 66 percent of those planning to buy a HD player preferred Blu-ray while 15 percent preferred HD-DVD. In the poll, respondents were given a side-by-side comparison of the Blu-ray and HD-DVD formats. This included company support, Hollywood studio support, gaming console support, disc capacity, potential movie title availability, and anticipated launch dates.

PC Magazine noticed significant omissions in both surveys. The earlier Blu-ray Disc survey never mentioned the price of the players. Sony and Samsung's Blu-ray players sell for $999, while Toshiba's HD-DVD players sell for $499. The Blu-ray survey also failed to mention the actual availability of content that will be sold on the format—as of this posting, Amazon.com lists 74 Blu-ray titles compared to 124 HD-DVD titles.

The recent Ipsos Vantis survey, meanwhile, never mentions the higher disk capacity of Blu-ray discs, 50 GB compared to 30 GB for HD-DVD, and doesn't mention that Blu-ray players have the ability to record HD content onto disk.

The Blu-ray survey found that consumers preferred Blu-ray because of the ability to play the discs in more consumer-electronics devices and to record HD content. The representatives we talked to at Ipsos Vantis attributed HD-DVD's success over Blu-Ray to the strength of its titles. They found that the titles available played a powerful role in the respondents' decision-making process. They believe their findings challenge previous surveys which omitted the current available titles, and show that HD-DVD's titles will win strong support for this format.
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1895,1992902,00.asp
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Old 07-24-2006, 05:54 PM   #2
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"The representatives we talked to at Ipsos Vantis attributed HD-DVD's success over Blu-Ray to the strength of its titles. They found that the titles available played a powerful role in the respondents' decision-making process."

Ironically, if that is what Toshiba found out in the survey that they commissioned, they should be very worried. With more studio support, BR is more likely in the long run to offer more titles than Toshiba. Toshiba won't be able to win this war with lower prices and a better roll-out if all Joe consumer cares about is which titles they can see on the player.
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Old 07-25-2006, 12:58 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fryet
"The representatives we talked to at Ipsos Vantis attributed HD-DVD's success over Blu-Ray to the strength of its titles. They found that the titles available played a powerful role in the respondents' decision-making process."

Ironically, if that is what Toshiba found out in the survey that they commissioned, they should be very worried. With more studio support, BR is more likely in the long run to offer more titles than Toshiba. Toshiba won't be able to win this war with lower prices and a better roll-out if all Joe consumer cares about is which titles they can see on the player.
But Joe consumer doesn't buy $1000 movie players no matter how many titles are available. They'd just stick with DVD. The number of studios supporting the two formats aren't as lopsided as you suggest anyway. It's also not about how many studios, it's about which movies are attractive to the buyer. You can have 5 studios supporting one format while 3 studios support the other, but if the movies people want are from the 3 studios it doesn't matter much.

Last edited by µCOM-4; 07-25-2006 at 01:04 AM.
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Old 07-25-2006, 10:07 AM   #4
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I was merely commenting on what their research found. When it comes to self-serving surveys like this, you can discount most of what they say, as everything is designed to make them look good. The part that I focus on is stuff that appears neutral or may actually harm them. Those are the parts I focus on these things, as I don't think they would lie about the negatives.
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Old 07-26-2006, 06:42 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fryet
I was merely commenting on what their research found. When it comes to self-serving surveys like this, you can discount most of what they say, as everything is designed to make them look good.
I generally ignore surveys anyway, even if they're impartial -- and these obviously weren't. This format war is going to be decided by the interraction of a complex range of factors, but cost will be the most important factor. And I would place advertising second after cost. Only after consumers process those two influences will the arcania of specs and performance come into play.

I personally don't think the availability of titles will play that much of a role at the beginning of the fight -- that is to say for the next several months. There won't be enough movies in either format to matter for a while, and the content producers will jump on the winning bandwagon just as soon as they figure out which one it is.
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Old 07-27-2006, 02:49 AM   #6
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Doesn't winning depend on which one the customer buys the most. I don't understand why it is so complicating. If you have a two product, for example, and people buy one product over another, wouldn't the one that doesn't sell eventually disppear? That's how small businesses go out of business and big businesses survive. The bottom line is which product people buy the most will survive.
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Old 07-27-2006, 05:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dontknowjack
Doesn't winning depend on which one the customer buys the most.
Uh, I think that's what I said. But think about what factors determine which one sells best. I apologize for saying this to a bunch of enthusiasts, but it ain't the specs.
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