Originally Posted by ottscay
It's certainly true that DVD replacement (i.e. tens of millions of BD players in consumers homes) won't begin util prices come down, but what you don't seem to understand is a lot of other
things have to happen before that is possible.
The cost of movies is far higher than the player (even with $1,000 players) and consumers are mentally conditioned to not want competing video foramts (ala DVD/Divx, or the legendary VHS/Beta). What consumers want is a single format, and they want one that feels "worth" the upgrade. The format war has depressed adoption by second and third tier early adopters, as has the profit-eating artificial price lowering. That may seem weird to you, but most earlier adopters (especially the ones who aren't hardcore tech geeks) like the status that comes with purchasing an "elite" product, and this usually build consumer demand before prices come down ("wow honey, did you see how good that blu-ray player looked on Tom's HDTV?"). THEN when prices come down sales take off.
What MSFToshiba did was try to artificially lower the pricing before there was sfficient consumer demand. That did allow people who were early-adopters at heart (but not pocket-book) to buy in, but it was never going to achieve wide-apread market penetration. Worse, it threatens the normal channels by which desirability is established, and could have caused consumers to see HDM as a cheap, waste-bin product before it ever achieved critical mass.
Luckily, the format war is now over, so we can get back to our regularly scheduled market penetration. As CE retailers drop HD DVD and push Blu-ray, more and more later early adopters will start to buy in (my brother in law and his coworker are two classic examples who jumped over the weekend) and the idea of HDM will start to excite people as they stop worrying about picking the "wrong" format and start being impressed by the image and sound quality, and the new intereactive features (which I suspect will player better to families and younger people than it has to HT enthusiasts so far).
So in short, the Warner decision is the most important thing
that could possibly happen, and it absolutely had to happen before prices dropped too much, or we could have lost everything.