I’ve been following the DVD-R vs. the DVD+RW competition rather closely. I became more interested after accidently buying the wrong format for my SuperDrive at Office Max. (And still haven’t had the time to get back there for a refund.) I hate that …
Another informative article on the subject surfaced this morning over at Insanely Great Mac that points out that many DVD manufacturers are now leaning toward a “multi-format” recorders tentatively dubbed as Real DVD. My top of mind response is: “This is a good idea.”
At the moment Samsung, Toshiba, Hitachi, Matsushita (Panasonic), Pioneer, and Apple are producing equipment using the DVD-R/RW format. Microsoft, Sony, and a host of others are behind the DVD+RW format, although Sony seems to be hedging its bets by showing support for DVD-R also. Depending on whose facts your believe, DVD-R and DVD+RW seem to be in a real horse race for popularity among consumers. In the end, I think DVD-R would prevail, but I don’t want it to come to that.
Just as a casual observation, it’s amazing to me that a company so bright as Sony — in some ways I consider them the Apple of the PC world — could end up on the wrong side of the format fence so many times. Both Betamax and MiniDisc are cool technologies, but ultimately lost pace with rivals. The Memory Stick is doggedly hanging in there (as is the MiniDisc for that matter), but it’s only a matter of time until Memory Sticks meet the same proprietary fate as Sony’s other “we’re the only ones using these” formats. For example, I already see the new xD memory card gaining ground, in part due to multi-company support.
Right now, nothing would please me more (technologically speaking that is) than to see Sony throw all of its support toward an universal DVD format alongside other major manufacturers.
I like Sony products. This is why I really want to see Sony, Samsung, Toshiba, Hitachi, Matsushita, Pioneer, and Apple all producing equipment with the same format. The Recordable DVD Council appears to be working in this direction. It’s only logical to settle on a standard disc.
In the meantime, I best get my tail over to Office Max for a refund while those DVD+RWs are still popular …