Blue-ray, launched mid 2006, offers consumers an opportunity to watch higher definition movies and gives the movie enthusiast more reason to stay in all weekend tucked in with a bag of chips and the laptop.
Currently available as standalone drives or as drives on laptops and computers, Blue-ray is offered by over 200 of the world’s top consumer electronic companies. Dell for example, one of the first companies to become involved with Blue-ray, offers a laptop and desktop option. Blue-ray gets its name from the blue-violet laser used to read and write data on a disc. This laser is shorter than the red laser that DVD players use and is more precise, allowing data to be stored more tightly – five times as much as a DVD allows. Blue-ray is old news to the techno junkie, but we’ve by no means heard the last of it, and there are some interesting new developments in the pipeline.
Panasonic’s DMP-B15 new portable Blue-ray player, launched this year, is the first portable Blue-ray player. The resolution is lower than what Blue-ray discs offer, but it is still markedly higher than that of a DVD player. Although not visually all that appealing, it is perfect for the seasoned traveller who enjoys the escapism that high-definition movies offer. It can also be connected to a big screen TV for those times spent at home.
The Blue-Ray Akoya 8610 Medion is the answer for you if you are looking for a home entertainment system come laptop – and it’s reasonably priced. You’ll forget it’s a computer when making use of the high resolution (1,680 x 945), 18.4-inch screen and Dolby surround sound system that is included.
Sony is on top of its game, and will be releasing the Vaio AR Premium in mid-January 2009. This notebook with 17 inch screen also has futuristic multimeda features, sporting the capacity to record high definition camcorder content to Blu-ray discs.
In a move to bring Blu-Ray to more households, Vizio is releasing the VBR100 Blu-ray player in the US which will cost under $200. Although it only has the bare basics, the price is bound to appeal to cash-strapped consumers.
Blue-ray is innovation in visual electronics at its best, revolutionising data storage and adding an extra dimension to visual media. Pioneer recently pushed the envelope even further, developing a prototype disk that can hold a phenomenal 500GB on 20 layers: a promise that we are just experiencing the tip of the Blue-ray ice-berg.