Originally Posted by Home Cinema Choice Toshiba promises Blu-ray innovations for 2010, including first Freeview HD recorder
Steve May - 1 December 2009 - 4:03pm
On the eve of the release of its first Blu-ray player, Toshiba has pledged a significant investment in the hi-def format for 2010, with the promise of a much wider range of products designed to set it apart from the crowd.
Speaking exclusively to Home Cinema Choice in Tokyo, Hideki Fujii from the brand's Digital AV Planning Department said that the UK was shaping up to be the biggest European territory for Blu-ray and that it would provide the ideal launch pad for a range of product innovations, including the first Blu-ray Freeview HD recorder, from the company..'Freeview HD important'
Fujii refused to be pushed on product specifics but conceded that a BD recorder was on the cards. 'I cannot say exactly what products we will release next year, but we are making plans for a DVB-T2 recorder.' Fujii confirmed that a Blu-ray recorder would also be released into the Japanese market next year: 'The player-only market is not so big in Japan, here people prefer recorders – and we have to listen to what our customers want.'
A Toshiba Freeview HD recorder would put the company head-to-head with other Japanese manufacturers thought to be developing Freeview HD units.
The upcoming BDX2000 Blu-ray player will sell for approx. £450, and offers generic functionality, including BD Live Profile 2.0 support, integrated SDHC card slot and HDMI-CEC control.
One concession to the Toshiba branding is its striking Crystal Cut front fascia panel. 'In addition to being available in most high-streets, we will also bundle our player with Regza LCD TVs,' says Fujii. Interestingly, Toshiba is not predicting that the Blu-ray market will rival DVD penetration even though it agrees the format is in for a period of rapid growth. 'The emerging IPTV and VOD markets will cause sales to plateau in around five years,' says Fujii.The return of XDE
When asked why the BDX2000 lacks any of Toshiba's proprietary XDE picture processing modes for enhanced DVD replay, Fujii-san explained that the time between the decision to back Blu-ray and the required product launch was just too short. 'We only had around three months to prepare,' he told us. However, XDE remains a key technology for the company and Fujii says that it will return in a new generation of DVD players and possibly as part of the brand's 2010 Blu-ray product mix.