Sony, Toshiba failed to Agree on DVD Format

Groups headed by Toshiba Corp. and Sony Corp. offering competing technologies for next-generation DVDs have given up efforts to develop a unified format, the Yomiuri newspaper reported on Tuesday.

For three years, the two groups have pushed to have their respective technology standards adopted to gain dominance in the multibillion-dollar markets for DVD players, PC drives and optical discs.

Toshiba, along with NEC Corp. and Sanyo Electric Co., has been promoting HD DVD, while Sony and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., the maker of Panasonic brand products, have been developing a technology known as Blu-ray.

The two groups have held negotiations on unifying their formats to persuade consumers to shift to advanced discs and to promote growth in the industry, reports Reuters.

The two sides have been developing their DVD formats separately. In February, growing worries about possible confusion arising from the different formats prompted Sony, Matsushita and Toshiba to start talks on a unified format.

Nonetheless, with each side claiming its format's superiority over the other, the negotiations have been suspended since May, the report said.

Sony plans to put on sale early next year its PlayStation3 console, a game machine that can use Blue-ray disks, while Toshiba intends to market a HD player at the end of the year, informs Forbes.

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