Sony's New Headache: People Can’t Tell The Difference Between Blu-Ray, DVDs They Already Own

There’s a lot standing in the way of Blu-ray’s success. There’s the price — it costs $300 for a player and $30 for a movie. And there’s technology — the world is moving away from physical discs.

But Blu-ray’s bigger problem may be even more basic — people don’t think the hi-def discs are better than the ones they already own. New research shows that people can’t really tell the difference between Blu-Ray discs and normal DVDs, especially people who use “upconverting” DVD players, or who don’t own the highest-end TVs.

Poor Sony (SNE). The company behind Blu-Ray barely has had time to put down the champagne from the format war victory celebration. There is a relatively easy solutions to their problems: A price drop. If the price of Blu-Ray players and discs comes close to that of their DVD counterparts — next to nothing, for both the machines and the movies — then people won’t care. But that won’t be what Sony wants to hear.

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