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Pricing of Blu-Ray disks... first look $29.95 USD

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Old 02-09-2006, 12:46 AM   #1  
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Post Pricing of Blu-Ray disks... first look $29.95 USD

Reuters/Hollywood

Sony Pictures on Tuesday became the first major studio to put a price tag on Blu-ray discs when they become available in U.S. stores this year.

At the same time, the studio unveiled what many observers believe will be a key component of the next-generation, high-definition optical disc's marketing strategy: bundling various formats together to give consumers more flexibility and mobility.

Catalog Blu-ray disc titles will wholesale for $17.95, about the same as DVDs when that format hit the market in 1997. New-release Blu-ray discs will wholesale for $23.45, a premium of 15%-20% over what suppliers were charging for new theatrical DVDs.

The higher pricing structure for new releases is meant to accommodate the sell-through and rental markets, said Benjamin Feingold, president of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. He noted that in at the dawn of DVD in 1997, most movies initially were released on rental-priced videocassettes.

"The premium is for a way better format and to remind retailers that at the time we launched DVD, VHS was selling for $55 wholesale in the first window," Feingold said.

He added that Sony will not attach any suggested list prices to its Blu-ray discs, at least not at this time.

"From the retail perspective, this is going to be a hot product, and retailers will no doubt determine their own margin structure," he said. "We believe in a free market."

Blu-ray discs likely will start showing up in stores by early summer, sources say. In advance of that, Sony is bowing a bundling concept to DVD and the Universal Media Disc (UMD) that it may migrate to Blu-ray.

Starting March 28, consumers can buy DVD-UMD combo packs of "The Grudge," "Resident Evil," "Underworld," "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and MGM's "The Terminator" for just pennies more than Sony typically charges for a new DVD.

A second batch of DVD-UMD combos -- "Ghostbusters," "Mad Max," "The Fifth Element" and "Snatch" -- arrives April 25, with a third wave is slated to come on the market in May.

Each combo is priced at $28.95. Sony typically charges $24.96-$26.96 for new DVD releases, while titles new to UMD generally list for $19.95.

Feingold said that is a taste of what consumers can expect when Blu-ray discs appear in stores.

"With the launch of Blu-ray, we're going to try to introduce the managed-copy concept, where if you buy Blu-ray you'll be able to get additional versions (of the same title) to use in your home," Feingold said. "Ultimately, we might even get to the point where we'll offer consumers the ability to have different versions of the same movie on different devices in the home -- that's something we're working on."

For now, Feingold said, "we're experimenting with UMD," the tiny optical-disc format playable only on Sony's handheld PlayStation Portable (PSP).

"A lot of people have DVD players and also have PSPs, and this way for one price they can get one movie and play it back on both formats," Feingold said.

Feingold would not specify whether future Blu-ray bundling would be electronic or physical, as is the case with the DVD-UMD combo packs.
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Old 02-09-2006, 11:49 AM   #2  
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Default Don't buy into the first releases.. as the price increases.

Part missed... and increase the price another $5-20 for marginal improvement.

The first wave of both BD and HD DVD titles will most likely not include the high degree of functionality initially promised. e.g. being able to overlay the disc's main menu along one edge of the screen while the movie is still playing.

The reason is because the standards underlying both technologies - Blu-ray Java, and the iHD interactive layer for HD DVD - require APIs for interfacing with disc player hardware, that have yet to be finalized, and may conceivably not be written in firmware even as the first players are introduced into the market. HD DVD manufacturers already indicated last month that the first wave of their high-def equipment may not be full-featured.

This creates the possibility of a future situation which Sony Pictures' Feingold has not spoken to: a future wave of "special edition" or "enhanced" high-def movie titles which include the full functionality that consumers were promised, at a slightly higher price, at least during the period while older, lower-functionality high-def titles are being phased out.

full article in case I missed something.

http://www.tgdaily.com/2006/02/08/so...lesale_prices/
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Old 02-12-2006, 02:01 AM   #3  
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Lions Gate has announced 24.95 retail for its releases on Blu Ray and the Sony discs will be 17.95 for catolg titles and 24.35 for new releases wholesale.

Good news imo.
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Old 02-12-2006, 08:57 AM   #4  
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I'll just rent for now...
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Old 02-12-2006, 10:51 AM   #5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by borromini
I'll just rent for now...
Yep, I will mostly rent also, but I don't expect netflix to have enough titles to rent for all of us, so it could be quite the wait.

And its nice to know that Blu Ray catalog titles are the same price as sd dvd was in 97 when first released, for the movies I will purchase.
A lot of people figured these discs would be priced a bit higher.
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Old 02-16-2006, 12:20 AM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gpt
Yep, I will mostly rent also, but I don't expect netflix to have enough titles to rent for all of us, so it could be quite the wait.

And its nice to know that Blu Ray catalog titles are the same price as sd dvd was in 97 when first released, for the movies I will purchase.
A lot of people figured these discs would be priced a bit higher.
Those are the wholesale prices... The Retail mark-up will put the pricing up to the $30-40 USD mark (push that to $50-70 CDN), most of us will rent. This will give a huge needed lift to the blockbusters out there and an instant market for the disks despite the pricing.
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