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Monday, July 16, 2007
HDTV Broadcasting Laws Hinder Popularity of HD DVD, Blu-Ray Recorders

The current fuzzy legal laws related to the HDTV Broadcasting strategy in Europe and the U.S. are not allowing Sony and Toshiba to develop their HD Recorder markets.

The main concern of the HDTV content providers, is to ensure that the regional copyright laws will protect their content from free distribution through multiple copies on physical media such as HD DVD and Blu-Ray discs, or even DVDs. The idea is to allow recording of audio and video for personal use only. The idea is to either not allow users to make a copy at all, or at best, allow recording of audio and video for personal use only, meaning that consumers will be able to create a single copy from content recorded on their HD recorder's hard-disk. In Japan to date, you could make a copy from your hard disk onto DVD media, but the original on the hard disk would be erased.

However, the latest news from Japan indicate that the situation could change. The Japanese government has recently decided to allow consumers to make up to 10 copies of a DVD with digital TV content. Electronics makers are expected to release DVD recorders and other devices that are compatible with the new copying regulations next year. Current owners of conventional DVD recorders will have to buy new equipment to take advantage of the new regulations.

Possibly aware of the upcoming regulations, Toshiba, the main backer of the HD DVD format, announced its first HD DVD recorders for the Japanese market last June. In addition, the company will reportedly launch its first HD DVD recorders for the Chinese market before the Olympic games in 2008.

However, it is clear that sales of Blu-Ray and HD DVD recorders are not expected to rise until the HDTV Broadcasting strategy of regional governments in the EU and the U.S, decide on a common copy protection scheme.

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