A consortium of manufacturers has announced its readiness to begin volume production of high definition recordable DVDs (HD DVDs).
The first HD DVDR discs will go on sale next year, at around the same time as rivals in the Blu-Ray camp expect to launch their write-once discs.
High definition discs like HD DVD and Blu-Ray can store up to 50GB of data, thanks to the use of blue laser reading technology which allows data to be written more densely.
"HD DVD's basic feature of sharing the same disc structure as DVD made a large contribution to this success, and offers more and compelling evidence of our design policy's validity," said Hisashi Yamada, chief fellow at Toshiba's Digital Media Network Company.
"In 2004 the recordable and rewritable DVD disc market stood at around 1.4 billion discs, and about 90 per cent of those discs were write-once discs.
"The next-generation write-once HD DVD disc will be just as important, and I am sure that proving an efficient mass production technology for HD DVD-R discs will provide a big boost for a smooth transition from DVD to HD DVD."
Production of the discs relies on a new organic die. This allows data to be written on the discs reliably at the narrow spectrum of light used by blue lasers.
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