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Thursday, October 26, 2006
Lite-On Scrambles for Orders for BD Drives From HP


Taiwan's Lite-On IT Corp., besides contract supplying half-height (H/H) external high-definition HD DVD drives to HP of the U.S., is also actively trying to win the big American partner's order for blu-ray disc (BD) drives.

Dell and HP, two major global information technology (IT) players, are adopting different policies toward the next-generation DVD format. Dell is betting on the BD format, while HP on both BD and HD-DVD.

HP contracts Lite-On to produce the external H/H HD-DVD drives, which will be launched in the market in November. The U.S. firm has yet to finalize its contract supplier of BD drives, resulting in many firms competing for the big business, including Hitachi-LG Data Storage Inc. (HLDS), Samsung, and Lite-On.

HLDS and Samsung are betting on the BD format drive products, while Lite-On has won Philips' authorization on BD drive-related technologies.

Kung Jen-wu, Lite-On's opto-storage business president, said that Microsoft's Xbox 360 (Liteon makes console's ODDs) and Sony's PS3 game consoles would be the major pushers of next-generation DVD drives. Lite-On acquired BenQ Corp.'s optical-disc drive business in April this year and the acquisition is expected to bear fruit late this year.

In related news, Lite-On announced it has decided to stop production of consumer ODDs, mainly DVD recorders, to be sold under its Liteon brand in the global market, while keeping OEM/ODM production of such products.


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