No, They Don't.
[IN THE FOLLOWING POST, BLOGGER COREY GREENBERG TAKES HIS FINAL SHOT IN OUR POINT/COUNTERPOINT DEBATE: BLU-RAY - IS IT ALREADY OVER?]
Today's New York Times asks the question, "Blu-ray: Do Consumers Care?" but never answers it, which is par for the course for a newspaper that cares more about stupid [poop] than consumer electronics coverage, which the paper doesn't even bother to link to from its home page anymore.
But here's your answer anyway: No, They Don't. And you know what else? This is a Very Good Thing. It means consumers are getting Smarter, even if only Fractionally, about the real reasons new formats get force-fed to us every other year.
First off, let's be clear on this. CD was a real, easily heard improvement over LP. DVD was an even greater upgrade from VHS. But I feel no pain whatsoever about Blu-ray, HD-DVD, DVD-Audio, SACD, Smell-O-Vision, or any other failed media delivery format since things finally got so good that smart people stopped caring about the Next Disc. I'm out of this game for good, and the only reason I sporadically appear here is because Medich [site editor - and your delightful host] saved my life once in Thailand when a deal went down very, very wrong and that's all you need to know.
My head is clear now, my mind is at peace, my willingness to devote my time to pre-doomed Moebius strip-like chasing of illusory improvement in the area of electronic entertainment playback non-existent, and I thank my God and yours for this priceless gift of living, for the first time in many a wasted year, with my head outside the lining of my [tuckus area].
Medich, you hustled me out of that warehouse in Phuket that one time before the militias swarmed in so take what I'm about to tell you as from one brother to another: Some day, when you're finally kicked outside the tent, you'll know I was right about Blu-ray and you'll quit your job and [tinkle] on the laptop Hachette gave you [What laptop? -Medich] and you'll run for the elevator and run out of the building and keep running until you sweat the junk out of your pores and your head is clear and the wind and the elements and the truth strip away the self you used to know like the dried husk of a snake on the road.
Blu-ray is dead, as is physical media period. You want the Next Excellent Thing? H.264 from the Cloud. AppleTV/FIOS/Torrents is the name of my God, and he is a joyous and merciful God. I will never buy another $20 disc again or a $500 box to play it on, and if you're reading this, you shouldn't either. Selah.-Corey Greenberg
[Rob Medich's final reply: Dude, sounds like you fell asleep while watching Poltergeist again!]