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19 November 2003 HD-DVD: the next consumer electronics revolution?
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The DVD is emerging as one of the world's favorite consumer electronics product, rapidly replacing analog videotape in the US and many other markets at prodigious rates. It is capable of offering a full feature-length, standard-definition movie in crisp rendition on TV. TV technology is itself in the midst of switching from analog to digital TV, with high-definition being the main draw. In fact, the US government has been advocating that switch over to digital TC, with both carrot and stick approaches, for nearly two decades, with only modest results--about 2% penetration. Under FCC herding, broadcasters are falling in the digital line--slowly, and sans profit. Meanwhile, delivery of HD content on portable media would be a great solution. Indeed, a new disk technology based on blue lasers is coming; but its widespread adoption may yet be four to five yeras away. But a promising new video codec--H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, the latest coding standard jointly developed by the Video Coding Experts Group (VCEG) of ITU-T and Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) of ISO/IEC, just might be the missing link. It offers substantial coding gains over MPEG-2, used in today's DVDs. With H.264, it appears possible to put HD movies on today's red-laser DVDs. Since consumers love DVDs, and HD--when they can see it, can H.264 and HD-DVD ignite a new revolution, now? It may have a huge impact on (H)DTV adoption rates.
© (2003) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Pankaj N. Topiwala "HD-DVD: the next consumer electronics revolution?", Proc. SPIE 5203, Applications of Digital Image Processing XXVI, (19 November 2003);


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