QUOTE(twistedsymphony @ May 1 2008, 10:10 AM)
I've said it hundreds of times before... convenience drives the market NOT quality...
Example: vinyl < cassette < CD < [what came next?]
A. the higher quality choice: SACD/DVD-A
B. the lower quality but more convenient choice: Digital Audio/MP3s
Example 2: telegraphs < party lines < home phones < [what came next?]
A. the higher quality choice: video phones
B. the lower quality but more convenient choice: cell phones
Example 3: VHS < DVD < [what comes next?]
A. the higher quality choice: blu-ray disc
B. the lower quality but more convenient choice: digital downloads
Blu-ray wont be going anywhere but I'll be surprised if it ever reaches mass market appeal.
Right now Digital Downloads are still in their infancy and if sony can get a sub $250 player out by the end of the year and take a clean $10-$15 price cut off media across the board then yeah they'll have a shot, but if we don't see that this fall there will be more people buying Apple TVs than people buying blu-ray and you'll se it go the way of the laser disc... SACD and other technologies that couldn't garner mass market appeal even without any competition simply because they offered no advances to convince.
Along with convenience comes cost. Each of the samples you listed are the more convenient but also are the lower cost choice.
To get the most out of high definition discs you need a nice $600-$1000 TV, a nice audio set-up, and a player for at least $300-400. So, not only are the disks twice as high as dvd's, the eqipment to enjoy them requires a substantial outlay.
Remember, movies and audio are not the majority's priority- education of children, homes, furniture, transportation, clothing, and social life take a lot of folk's disposable income.
My point is that convenience and cost go hand-in-hand. Having a chaffeur drive you to work is more convenient but the cost precludes it.