How will the struggle for market supremacy of PC disk drive continue?
Blu-ray Disc (BD) or HD-DVD? The market battle of new generation DVDs is still uncertain. Now, as new generation DVDs are the hot topic of the Japanese market, the PC disk drives for new generation DVD are already on sale. We explore the market of DVD drives using BCN Ranking.
Top seller was “LF-MB121JD” by Panasonic.
There are two types of optical disc drives for PCs, “built-in models” and “bare models.” The “built-in models” need ATA or serial ATA cables to connect the drive with a PC. On the other hand, “bare models” use USB cables for connecting so it can plug into both desktop and laptop PCs. This time, we will focus on “next generation DVD drives” from all the disk drives. “Next generation DVD drive” means there is an optical disc drive that is available for either BD or HD-DVD. According to the August BCN Ranking, “LF-MB121JD” by Panasonic took first place in market share with 15.8% of sales.
“LF-MB121JD” is a “built-in model” with BD drive. It can read and write BD-R or BD-RE and is also able to write BD-ROM. The maximum transfer rate is 9MB per a second with 2X speed writing/reading. As for DVD, it has 8X speed writing/reading and for CD it has 24X speed writing and 32X speed reading. Our estimated cost is about ¥59,600 on September 11th for this model.
The “BRD-M2S” series BD drive of I-O DATA DEVICE took second and third place. In second place was the “BRD-AM2SB” with 15.0% share and in third place was the “BRD-UM2S” with 14.2%. The price of “BRD-AM2SB” is ¥59,500 and the price of “BRD-UM2S” is ¥64,900. Both products have the same writing/reading specification as the “LF-MB121JD.”
When we switch from product share to maker share, I-O DATA DEVICE received the top sales share of the “next generation DVD drive” market with 40.4% of sales share. Panasonic is in second place with 15.8% share, BUFFALO and Pioneer are chasing the top 2 with a slim margin. The “next generation DVD drive” market is still small and has very little product variety. However, I-O DATA DEVICE launched their new products in both “built-in models” and “bare models” in February, and this line-up had a positive effect in the market.
“both available” disk drive is center of attention
As for the PC disk drive market, there is also a share battle between BD and HD-DVD, but there is also a third party coming out. The “both available” disk drive that is able to read both BD and HD- DVD.
The “GGC-H20NBK” by LG Electronics took fifth place of market sales with 8.1% share. This drive is the only “both available model” within the top 10 products. It has a maximum 6X BD reading speed and 3X HD-DVD reading speed. Although this product is still new (launched in August), the estimated price is ¥34,800. At the end of August, BUFFALO launched “both available models” and I-O DATA DEVICE also released “both available models” this month. BUFFALO expected to launch their new drive that has BD writing/reading and HD-DVD reading function.
The market is now looking forward to the drive that can write HD-DVD. However, there are currently no makers selling a drive like that. Only TOSHIBA’s PCs have an HD-DVD writing drive, but they are not selling the drive itself as a product. BUFFALO and I-O DATA DEVICE also said there is no scheduled launch for an HD-DVD writing drive.
However if a drive that can write/read both BD and HD-DVD was launched, it will strongly impact the share battle of new generation DVD.