You think the rivalry between HD-DVD and Blu-Ray is bad enough? Throw in another one, and youâ€™ll get a headache as big as China.
China intends to do away with the competing DVD formats by 2008 and adopt its own EVD, or Enhanced Versatile Disc format. The Chinese want their own homegrown format as an alternative to the HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc next-generation video standards being promoted by competing groups of U.S., Japanese and European consortia.
And theyâ€™re doing it with state-backing, for chrissakes. Not fair, you say? Well, itâ€™s still a free market; only that, in China the state is free to impose what it sees as good for them, and EVD is it.
EVD first popped up in 2003 but was quickly dropped when nobody showed interest (besides, the various producers were squabbling over licensing fees). Now Chinese electronics makers have revived the campaign on a massive scale (with a little persuasion from the government). They plan to switch completely to EVD by 2008 and stop producing DVD players altogether.
Good luck, Blu-Ray. Good luck, HD-DVD. Here comes EVD.