Q&A - May, 2007 Page 2
Q. I just bought an HD DVD of the movie Spartacus, and a note with it said that I might need a firmware update. What exactly is a firmware update? Nicholas Tamerius Saskatoon, Canada
A. Al Griffin says: Firmware is a term that comes from the PC world and can be generally defined as a software component in a hardware device. In most cases, the firmware of a given product such as an HD DVD or Blu-ray Disc player resides on an internal storage chip. In some products the data on the chip can be erased and programmed with new information - usually supplied via Web download or software on a disc provided by the manufacturer - in a process known as a firmware update. First-generation machines such as your HD DVD player are bound to require some aftermarket tweaking to ensure that the performance is up-to-date, as well as to guarantee compatibility with other electronic gear and new software releases. That's why Toshiba, for example, has issued at least two firmware updates during the past year for its HD-XA1 and HD-A1 HD DVD players.