Study Shows Almost 90 Percent of Sales People Recommend Blu-ray Disc Over HD DVD

Posted by Dave Cowl on February 15, 2008 
Filed Under: Blu-ray, Format War, HD DVD, Retailers

jdpower.thumbnail.jpgAccording to Twice, a new J.D. Power and Associates mystery shopper study has found that
retail salespeople across the country are strongly recommending Blu-ray Disc players over HD DVD to their customers.

The study report states that less than 1-in-10 retail salespeople recommended HD DVD to survey takers posing as shoppers for the syndicated, independent field study.

The HD disc study was part of the Television Retail Insights report, which is jointly produced by J.D. Power and Associates and Market Force Information.

The current study covered electronics salespeople in over 200 storefronts in January. Mystery shoppers posed as people who had just purchased an HDTV and were looking for a nameless dedicated HD disc player.

The survey found 25 percent of all salespeople chose not to recommend one platform over the other. But of those who did, 89 percent recommended Blu-ray, and most of them “very strongly recommended Blu-ray, to the point that a typical customer would have had to think long and hard before buying HD DVD in the face of what salespeople are telling them about the two platforms.

While Best Buy only recently publicised that they would recommend Blu-ray to buyers, the study from January didn’t come across a single Best Buy salesperson recommending HD DVD.

Only one retailer – Rex – had salespeople that were split approximately 50/50 in steering shoppers toward Blu-ray and HD DVD to customers.

According to the study, the only advantage of HD DVD mentioned by more than a few salespeople was price.

The survey indicated that the sales push toward Blu-ray “was not related to technical features, instead the focus of most pitches were on the following: 1) there is a format war going on and most salespeople felt that Blu-ray had already won the war or would be the eventual winner of the war; 2) the companies backing Blu-ray are the stronger players, with Sony mentioned most prominently; 3) Blu-ray had the strongest studio support and title selection.

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10 Responses to “Study Shows Almost 90 Percent of Sales People Recommend Blu-ray Disc Over HD DVD”

  1. Mehar on February 15th, 2008 7:08 pm

    The only thing it can be recommended for is studio support, nothing else. (Space hasen’t proven anything yet, 300 has more features on HD DVD and takes up only 25GB)

  2. Ryan on February 15th, 2008 7:15 pm

    I honestly couldn’t recommend one over the other – I lay out the facts and let the customer choose for themselves. I don’t believe in doing it any other way. It doesn’t help any that my answer to the most popular question is still “both.”

  3. Dave Cowl on February 15th, 2008 7:17 pm

    300 is a BD50 actually.

  4. Mehar on February 15th, 2008 7:18 pm

    I usally would recommend HD DVD, but I would only recommend Blu Ray if that person was going to get a PS3 because of obious reasons. At the low prices I would still recommend HD DVD, their are still great movies being released for it at low prices, so its a win win for everyone, a low priced player with low priced next gen media. I emphazie the low price to those that will try to bash me, its not like your going to be spending $200+ when players are less then $150 and come with potentially 7 movies for free. Its not like either format will stop working after the other calls it quits.

  5. Dave Cowl on February 15th, 2008 8:40 pm

    If you already have a player, it is fine to get titles for it etc, but to recommend getting an HD DVD player now is just silly.

    You would be better to put the money towards a BD player – then you will have access to the HD media moving forward.

    400 HD DVD titles might seem like a lot, but compared to the number of titles in a few years on BD, it will seem silly to have a player that is capable of playing so few titles… it will be a waste of rack space.

  6. Belard on February 16th, 2008 5:34 am

    You’re still spending $130~150 for a dead format. But after today, I’m guessing about $50~75… And the free movie deal may likely end too as THAT COSTS MONEY to Toshiba.

    They have to dump the players for super cheap as DVD players, that is the best they can hope for.

  7. Mehar on February 16th, 2008 8:10 am

    Like I said, the players are cheap enough that you can still enjoy high def goodness. Besides, suppose Universal goes Blu, and they release the Bourne Ultimatium on Blu Ray, the HD DVD release will still be superior because it takes full advantage of the next gen special features, the same applies for a majority of titles.

  8. Dave Cowl on February 16th, 2008 10:16 am

    Mehar, that is simply not true.

    Firstly, there have already been Blu-ray releases that have internet and PiP features – there are no HD DVD features that cannot be authored to Blu-ray. Hardware to use them is not here yet, but the discs can be authored.

    Secondly, relatively few HD DVD titles take advantage of the advanced features, and quite a number of HD DVD releases lack lossless audio – this includes American Gangster and The Kingdom, which were supposed to have lossless audio but it was dropped, no doubt due to the lack of bitrate or capacity in the HD DVD spec.

    So the BD release could easily have everything the HD DVD release has plus lossless audio.

  9. Kevin Murphy on February 17th, 2008 4:15 pm

    Well, at this point who wouldn’t? At least from a practical point of view.

    But quoting what AV sales folks do isn’t all that convincing, since most of them are dumber than a bag of 8-tracks.

    I will point out that many stores in my area have had HD DVD nailed to the floor for quite some time now, doing things like playing Blu-ray disks against SD DVDs in the HD DVD players. “Gee, look how much better this picure is!” The stores make far more money selling a $500 player than a $200 player and instruct their sales folks to that end.

    Not that it matters any more.

  10. Blue_On_Blue on February 18th, 2008 7:47 am

    90 percent of sales people aren’t that knowledgeable, anyhow.

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