I've no idea how many would need to be sold before LG would consider them a success but I'm guessing more than sell on eBay, not that I know though.
That's a fair point. I have no idea how many they are really selling. I've found a few sitting in my local Best Buy's, but I'm in a part of the country for which HD is probably not a huge priority. I'll tell you this, though, the last time I was in a BB, the salesmen recommended the combo players to me because of "the great HD DVD deals you can get on the Internet". Kinda funny, considering they sell HD software in their store. (BR-only now, of course.
I used to work for a small software house where the software itself was very old (and badly in need of re-writing) but like your example it was very popular with the market it was intended for (estate agents) because it did what they wanted, better than most and it was forever being tinkered with.
Yep. I wonder how many of those Frankenstein products are out there still...?
Combos are dead? Think again. In 2 years I bet that all players can play bluray + dvd + hd-dvd. A year ago a single lens mechanism was developed that reads both bluray and hd-dvd. It isn't going to cost much if anything to have the ability to play both built in. If they do not go this route it would simply be due to one company being too snubby to add that (something from a prior competitor) to it's products.
They certainly could be that snobby, of course. From what I gather, the whole format war was created because of a bunch of chest-thumping on both sides...but that is yesterday...
Personally, I think they're marketing these combo players wrong now (and probably were even during the format war). They should
market them as 'everything players', because frankly that's almost what they are--especially the LG model. They shouldn't just allow the region hacks, they should capitalize on them. Given a choice, who wouldn't want a player that can play everything fairly well? Better yet, they should up the ante on finding disks the players don't play. Instead of fixing them 'maybe' when the next firmware comes out, they should say a public "give us something it doesn't play" and then when they come, fix them within a month or two. It could change the morale on their team from being "oh, we're working on a dead-end product" to "we're working on the best darn everything player out there".
Just my two cents.