Now that there is no longer competition between Blu-ray and HD DVD, Blu-ray prices have started showing an increasing trend going by this TG Daily report. As a result, while the consumer can now safely pick-up a Blu-ray player knowing that the HD disc format war has finished, the bad news is that it may not be until much later in the year that Blu-ray disc player prices start going back down again. In the meantime, HD DVD players have sharply fallen in price as retailers try clearing out their remaining stock, with the HD-A3 reaching $102 and the HD-A30 reaching $137.
Most Blu-ray players have kept a very stable price, followed by a light upward trend after the official HD DVD is dead announcement from Toshiba. According to TG Daily, they expect little hope in any significant cut in Blu-ray player prices over the next six months, with industry sources saying that the first under-$300 players are not expected until December.
Besides Blu-ray player prices, going by this Punch Jump report, some Blu-ray disc prices have also gone up following Toshiba's ending of HD DVD. For example, on Amazon.com the popular Planet Earth Series on Blu-ray has gone up from $54.95 to $66.95 and Spider-Man Trilogy Blu-ray title has made a significant jump from $48.95 to $64.95. On the other hand, some retailers still have Blu-ray title promotions either offering discounts on select titles or free Blu-ray disc bundles with certain players.
As we reported before, Blu-ray will eventually have to face competition from on-demand HD services, either by broadcast (satellite and cable) or as downloads. However, at least in this case, what ever titles studios release on demand, they are most likely to release these also on Blu-ray disc. In the meantime, much more effort will need to be put in to convince consumers to replace their DVD player with a Blu-ray disc player, so even though Blu-ray no longer has competition from HD DVD, they still need low enough prices to attract consumers. Since many consumers are still perfectly happy with the picture from their DVD player, this switch will certainly not be as simple as the switch from VHS to DVD.