Toshiba to continue support for its HD DVD customers

Toshiba to continue support for its HD DVD customers

Toshiba has officially announced that it will no longer develop, manufacture and market HD DVD players and recorders.

After months of speculation and rumours, the company said its "decision has been made following recent changes in the market". Although the company will continue to manufacture standard DVD players, it said nothing about manufacturing players using its rival Sony's Blu-ray technology.

However, Toshiba said it will continue to provide full product support and after-sales service for owners of Toshiba HD DVD products, including hard disk drives in PCs. It is thought that about 85,000 players have been sold in Europe; half of which are to UK consumers.

Interestingly, however, the company said it will continue to "assess the position" of notebook PCs with integrated HD DVD hard disks.

Atsutoshi Nishida, Toshiba Corporation's president and chief executive officer said: "We carefully assessed the long-term impact of continuing the 'next-generation format war' and concluded that a swift decision will best help the market develop".

It will begin to reduce shipments of HD DVD players, recorders and volume production of hard disk drives for PCs to retailers and computer manufacturers aiming for cessation by the end of March.

Toshiba said it also intends to maintain collaborative relations with the companies that joined it in working to build up the HD DVD market. These companies include Microsoft, Intel HP and Universal Studios, Paramount Pictures, and Dreamworks Animation.