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IFA 2007: BD-UP5000: Samsung's Dual Format Player for Blu-ray and HD-DVD

Samsung's BD-UP5000 Duo HD Player

Currently, the battle for dominance between the two HD-video formats Blu-ray and HD-DVD is being carried out at the consumers' expense. At IFA 2007, Samsung introduced a so-called Duo HD player that can handle both HD-formats.

In addition to Blu-ray, HD-DVD and HQV (Hollywood Quality Video) functionality, the Samsung BD-UP5000 also features an Ethernet connector for use with interactive content. Samsung calls this technique BD-J and HDi. BD-J is based on the Java 2 Micro Edition and is meant to enhance the title features. BD-J is also compatible with discs that were authored using the classic HDMV-mode.

HDi, on the other hand, can be used to enhance the menus on videodiscs. For example, additional information on the current movie can be incorporated into the menus from the Internet, adding content that was not available at the time the disc was pressed, such as commentaries, inside information or recommendations. HDi also allows the implementation of a picture-in-picture mode, meaning that the main feature does not have to be interrupted to enjoy these additional features.

The launch is expected in December 2007, in time for the important holiday (shopping) season. The BD-UP5000 won't be cheap, though, costing about € 1,000.