In a brief statement to the media this morning Toshiba confirmed a recent report that they would enter the Blu-ray market this year stating, “To meet the increasing consumer demand for high definition content, Toshiba America Consumer Products, L.L.C. will be entering the Blu-ray market. We will share additional product information and details later this year.”
The company had developed HD DVD, the competing format to Blu-ray Disc, but struggled to garner consumer electronics and studio support for the fledgling format beyond an add-on drive for the X-Box 360 from Microsoft, initial exclusive support from major Hollywood studio Universal, and the later backing of Paramount who dropped Blu-ray in favour of supporting HD DVD exclusively for a reported $150 million dollar payout.
Conversely, the Blu-ray format picked up major support from CE manufacturers from the onset and had the backing of Sony, Philips, Panasonic, and Samsung in addition to other manufacturers while managing to get the backing of heavyweight Hollywood studios Sony, Lionsgate, Warner, and Paramount and smaller studios and distributors such as Magnolia, Starz/Anchor Bay.
Toshiba would throw in the towel on their HD DVD format in February of 2008 after Warner, who had been releasing titles on both formats, announced they would be pulling their support for HD DVD.