Microsoft Announces Use of HDi Logo by Toshiba and Major Hollywood Studios

Microsoft Corp. today announced that its trademarked HDi logo will soon appear on all Toshiba HD DVD players. In addition, Universal Studios Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Entertainment will include the HDi logo on packaging for HD DVD movie titles beginning in the fourth quarter of this year.

Microsoft HDi technology powers the interactive capabilities in every stand-alone HD DVD player on the market as well the HD DVD drive for Xbox 360®.

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ReBurn4046d ago

Looks like Microsoft's involvement in HD-DVD is a little deeper than "we released the HD-DVD add-on because our customers asked for it".

kewlkat0074046d ago

it seems like MS is more involved with HD-DVD. I didn't know it powers that technology behind the interactive features.

"Microsoft HDi technology powers the interactive capabilities in every stand-alone HD DVD player on the market as well the HD DVD drive for Xbox 360®."

Could there be more things in store for HD-DVD? , it almost seems like they are going full speed ahead, regardless of what everyone thinks, or morso fanboys.

Paramount/Universal Studios, have really shaken things up...

Off Topic:

I'm getting my Samsung LNT4671F 1080P next week, and I would like to try it out with a HD movie(I've seen this tv on the AVS forum, Looks awsome), so I'm keeping my eyes out for prices. If the Sony PS3 was cheaper, I would get one but there are movies that the other won't have.

I got a feeling it will be like this for a while, plus BD is not Finalize and no interactivity features. No I'm not getting the 360 HD-DVD drive, I always go with Stand-Alones(beter hardware) but I've heard of issues with Studder with the TV I'm getting. You sure do learn a lot from the AVS forum.

SonySoldiers4045d ago

Forget it!

Go back to Blu-ray technology, more advanced, higher performance, and made in Japan.

fjtorres4045d ago (Edited 4045d ago )

Blu-Ray's interactive features (BD-J, Sony's answer to HDi) are based on Java.
Which was created by, ahem, an *american* company, SUN Microsystems. And HD-DVD may use MS software and technology (a lot of it, in fact; the codecs, for one) but the disk tech is pure Toshiba, which is Japanese.
And, to mess you up even further, the best-looking Blu-ray movies are encoded using Microsoft's VC1, so even a Blu-Ray win over HD-DVD means money in Microsoft's pocket. And the only thing keeping BD afloat right now is Diney and Fox, both USA-based media companies. So, do be careful when casting nationalistic barbs in the tech arena; both camps are multinational and both camps rely on American tech and the American market is the battlefied where the issue will be settled or ignored. (So far, in case you hadn't noticed, "ignore" is winning. 97% of the market is passing on BD and HD-DVD in favor of upscaled DVDs.

For the record, when it comes to system software, which is what MS is contributing to HD-DVD, the top players are:
1- Microsoft (USA)
2- SUN (USA)
3- IBM (USA)
4- Apple (USA)
5- Novell (USA)
6- Red Hat (USA)
7- Ah, what the heck, you should get the idea by now...

Japanese companies make good hardware. And their system software isn't bad. But they are hardly first tier. In system software the only players that count are based in the U.S.A. Although South Africa's Canonical is making some noise with Ubuntu, thanks to Dell.
Its really a small world and its getting too small for nationalistic nonsense; any significant endeavor requires contributions from all parts of the world, where it be video game consoles or the next great passenger jet (787, btw) and each country contributes according to what they do best. Knocking any specific contributor is fruitless because all the major players have stakes on both sides anyway.
Move on, will ya?
Its the 21st century, fer crying out loud; nationalism is sooo 19th century!

PimpHandHappy4046d ago

will buy you something huh!?!?!?

cooke154045d ago

3 comments and this has 230 degrees? :|

Bolts4045d ago

This format war sucks enough already without the confusing branding. Is HDi the same as HD-DVD, and if so why the name change? HD-DVD is self explanatory, any consumer off the street will be able to understand what a HD-DVD entails so why change it?

I can see Blu-Ray being changed to something more catchy and less stupid but this HDi thing totally came outta no where.

P1MPDADDY4045d ago

They didnt change anything. HD-DVD is still the name of the format. The HDI is a marketing trademark showing that the movies have Microsoft's Interactive software built into the HD-DVD movie or HD-DVD Player. Just like I am sure Blu-Ray will come out with its own BD-Java markings on future discs and players once the software interactivity is incorporated in Blu-Ray movies and Blu-Ray players. Get used to it. Go to any electronics store and look at a Sony HDTV. They have so many things listed on the side panelfor marketiong it's ridiculous. The average consumer will read all of those things and think the Sony HDTV is the best because the other HDTV brands dont have them listed. It's called "marketing". Sh!t it almost convinced me till I saw the Samsung equivalent model and saw that the Samsung had better picture quality and a lower price...

fjtorres4045d ago (Edited 4045d ago )

Just like BD+ is a piece of BD-ROM and just like BD-J (the closest thing blu-ray has to HDi). Main difference is HDi is a universal feature of HD-DVD, required of all players, and BD-J is optional.
Here ya go:

HDi is an interactive app that is scriptable and skinnable to facilitate all sorts of advanced interactive features that has been a part of HD-DVD and is already in use.

BD-J is a Java-based programming environment that Sony added recently to BD-ROM to catch up to HD-DVD. It will start to appear on BD-ROMs that follow the BD 1.3 updated spec, maybe around XMAS, but it requires new players or updated firmware on the older players that *choose* to support it. It is not universal.

Officially, HDi is one of the main reasons Universal and Dreamworks went with HD-DVD (whether you choose to believe them or not is a different story) because BD-J requires JAVA programmers to create the interactive features while HDi doesn't require programmers, so its quicker and cheaper to get a disk out the door.

As an example of what can be done with HDi, on the HEROES HD-DVD set, it keeps track of every time the "broken helix" symbol shows up on screen and you can (optionally) have it pop up a box highlighting it and explaining why its there, every time it shows up. (If you've ever watched heroes, you'd know that's a lot. In fact, its a lot more than even a regular viewer is likely to catch. Other things that can be done with HDi includes games, managing online connectivity from the player (no PC needed, it has a web browser-type function that takes you straight to the studio servers), and all sort of film-school student-friendly commentary and tutorials that all run as Picture-in-picture video streams (another HD-DVD mandatory player feature that is merely optional in BD players).

The key thing is MS made HDi and offered it to HD-DVD (they jumped on it) and BD (Sony rejected it out of hand because it came from MS, just as they rejected VC1 at first--they had to backtrack on that because their partners *wanted* VC1).
Microsoft didn't use to care who won in the HD-DVD vs BD fight.
Sony, however, arranged it so that MS now cares.
Whatever comes next is of Sony's own doing; they picked the fight, not Microsoft.

Oh, BTW, BD+ is the second layer of copy protection that Sony added to BD-ROM that allows them to retroactively disably and brand or model of player that has been hacked by somebody, somewhere. Even if *your* player hasn't been tampered with. Nice guys, right?

Nameless4045d ago

Fanboi they could change Blu-Ray to Red-Ray