* Posts by Richard Spooner

19 publicly visible posts • joined 14 Dec 2007

Acer unwraps 'hologram'-clad Blu-ray laptops

Richard Spooner

Nice to see...

... A former HDDVD consortium member jumping ship soooo quickly!! Still in a year, one or two laptops from a whole range fitted with a HDDVD drive as a very expensive option is hardly a sign of a company particularly committed is it?!

How quickly my amusement at the HD format war turns to cynicism!

HTC to release handset video 'fix'

Richard Spooner

Talking of getting what I paid for

I paid a pretty good upgrade fee on a HTC phone to function quickly and properly in all reasonable circumstances. What you get is sluggish screen response in certain modes, poor stylus detection and generally poor memory performance related to graphical resources. All issued that don't show up during the 10 minutes play in the shop. Real day to day performance is pretty... Ropey. Shall we say.

The class action suit is over reaching certainly, but HTC have stiffed us with rubbish firmware on the current phones and to say they don't have the pocket money to address the issue is disgusting. Why is it up to the carriers to say "your firmware is shit"? Avoiding the issue and shirking responsibilty. You get what you paid for... Yeah a HTC phone. Won't be making that mistake again and are negotiating early upgrade with my carrier based on the fact that my HTC is not fit for purpose. And you know what? They agree with me! Well done HTC for not been bothered to even acknowledge the real issue let alone tackle it.

Moan over!

Sony intros next-gen Blu-ray players

Richard Spooner

short memories

Whilst I don't really disagree with the raised eye brows about the planned updates, people are forgetting that in the first two and a half years of DVD there were films that came out that wouldn't play in older players and required consumers to buy new machines. All early adopters got stung unless they paid £1000 for the very high end first generation players. Even then some got stung. I did. These players ended up obsolete and good for playing nothing but CDs or very old DVDs. There were no over the air firmware updates. At least this is going to be possible with new BR players so continuous solutions are available. And before anyone says, think about it, there will be very very few people buying one of these that doesn't have an Internet connection available.

Like I said whilst I agree with the need the fix the disk profile for the near future, people are really over reacting here. Oh and by the way, I own both a dedicated BR player and a dedicated HDDVD player before someone calls me a Sony lover etc etc.

Official: Toshiba discontinues HD DVD

Richard Spooner

Alli want...

...is the original Star Wars films on BR. Then I really would make a mess of my underpants

Mole claims Toshiba to terminate HD DVD

Richard Spooner


Tim, the only being continually abusive is yourself. no one cares what you spent your dosh on. what they care about here is the ignorance and immaturity of your rants in these forums. Monkey and several others made some very relevant comments about the HDDVD situation whilst also pointing out the continuing silly statements you are making.

"welcome you over to the format"... you want a red carpet or something? This is consumerism not the United Nations. I like how you also couldn't really respond to Monkey's comments! personified completely by your continued PS3 bashing, and PS3 rants. Thus proving Monkey's point about irrelevant article commenting.

HDDVD is dead Tim get over it. Your welcome to te format are your sales receipts my boy.

Monkey.. LOL nice one "you fking Mutt, you keep him here" says Tommmy as he exits the bar....

Price, not format war fears, holds back Blu-ray, says survey

Richard Spooner

Ahhh finally

.... Tim admits he got stung early adopting HD-DVD after numerous rants in a previous article comment! I'm also guessing due to the continual PS3 bashing that more was paid for the HD-DVD player too than a PS3!

(And for the record Tim, I too was an early adopter of a dedicated HD-DVD player before you pick apart any other comments again!)

Richard Spooner

In fairness

(Whilst still expensive compared to normal DVD), the prices of BR films are dropping reasonably quickly. HD-DVD disks were dropping quickly too until recently as well. Most films come in on BR sub £23 these days will many under £20.

But yes, until people DON'T have to shop around to the large extent for the low price, sales aren't going to sky rocket any time soon.

In regard to disk price though, people have very short memories. Block buster DVD movies were £25 each for the the first year or so of the DVD format. So to slate either BR or HD-DVD for the initial high prices is a little unfair. Now it they don't drop in price soon, then that is another matter.

Oh and why would the average consumer know or care about BR profile 2.0?!

Netflix falls in behind Blu-ray

Richard Spooner

Once again, the point was missed

It's not about installed user base! It's not about how many disks per head are bought. For goodness sake.

It is about how many disks are bought in total!! Whether they be by one person or one million. Tim, you really are misrepresenting the figures as much as you possibly can entirely to try to prove a point.

And to be honest, sounding very much like someone from the HD-DVD consortium press office a few months back before the wheels fell of the waggon!

Richard Spooner

The point is Tim...

That is doesn't matter which disk or player is technically superior. The fact is Joe Public can walk into Asda and buy Blu-ray releases and at a reducing cost.

They could HD-DVD for a while too, but not any more they can't, regardless of the fact that no formal statement has been issued. You might be able to find the odd disk in a cupboard if you ask, but I haven't seen them on shelves for about two months now.

It is about the amount of media sold. Not players, not technical superiority, but disks. There could be one million cheap shit HD-DVD players in the world and 10 £1000 BR players, but if those 10 BR owners buy 1 million disks a month and the million HD-DVD owners only 100,000 disks, BR wins.

It's not overly simplistic, or reliant on the much hated PS3 (Why?!) before it is claimed. It is simple maths. Think about it this way. The studios carried on making VHS tapes until the DVD disks reached a critical enough mass to make it profitable to go 100% DVD. When profits exceeded loses retailers were refunded and those VHS tapes returned and destroyed in massive quantities (and yes that IS fact). Netfix and Blockbusters have gone 100% BR so as they can concentrate funding in one area and maximise profit. No other reason.

(In reality though, go into a Blockbuster and marvel at the 'extensive' BR selection wedged up a corner. See Tim, a declaration of intent for pure long term profit).

Get it Tim?!

Sony Ericsson goes Windows Mobile with Xperia X1 'arc slider'

Richard Spooner

Will Likely be new version of Windows Mobile

I quote a Microsoft sales rep when pushed by a senior member of staff at the Orange shop last week concerning Windows Mobile 7. "Can't talk about it". He eventually gave away a late second quarter planned release date and that there will be new models from different manufacturers to go with it. What's the betting this is one of them?

And NO I am not saying WM6 is brilliant or that WM7 will be a massive improvement before anyone siezes on the comments!

Garmin takes on iPhone with satnav mobile

Richard Spooner

Remember though

Garmin were (still are?), possible the biggest continuous developer of the handheld GPS unit, and as such they made all the mistakes that other companies learnt from. I agree, the GPS-40 was terrible, but Garmin have done such a lot for devices with onboard GPS since and to write them off still on the basis of the GPS-40 is very unfair. In my opinion anyway.

Having used a phone with onboard GPS for the last six months, I will never do without in again where possible, and for someone who has had a great deal of success with several Garmin devices for different purposes the last five years, this phone has the potential to be top of the pile in it's particular niche. Why? Because Garmin know what they are doing with these sort of devices (mobile phones aside of course).

High Court orders Manhunt 2 release to be re-evaluated

Richard Spooner

I suspect there are other motivations

I reckon they are trying as much as anything to stop the game shops selling it to ignorant parents for their children. We've all seen it happen, and watched shop staff sell an 18 rated game to a less than savvy parent knowing they're purchasing it for the little kid standing next to them.

Whilst this does need to be tackled, and I intervened in a major high street retailer one day when I heard the assistant say to a parent "it's not that bad I wouldn't worry about to" about the original Manhunt for the 12 year old child (!!), the BBFC are going beyond the scope of the particular law if this is a motivation in this ban.

A change in the law making retailers culpable for under aged sales is where the issue needs to be addressed. That, and educating parents with proper press coverage about games and content. Not the tabloid Daily Mail education they get now which most people correctly just discard as scaremongering. Change the law so retailers can be prosecuted if there is clear evidence at point of sale that the game is being bought for a Minor, and at the same time educate parents sensibly as to what they are intending to buy for their children.

Stop the heavy handed banning of things like Manhunt 2, (unbelievable when Hostel 1 and 2 got rated), put it on the shelves, let us make our choices as sane consumers, and force the retailer through the correct legal statute to behave responsibly at point of sale with parents.

As for vulnerable adults, to be blunt, if you are inclined to murder someone brutally, you will anyway. Take the stabbing in Lancashire for instance or the Ipswich killings. That is a very, very thin argument from the BBFC.

Jobs: Blu-ray wins HD format war then loses to downloads

Richard Spooner

Missed my point

Iain, I agree entirely with you about the wider user base of the 360 and that it is a very viable base for HD movies rentals for Microsoft and box’ owners. But you did entirely miss my point. The installed 360 user base you seem fixated on because you thought I was 360 bashing, is nothing to do with Steve Jobs and the nonsense of streaming movies rental killing disc media any time soon. Oh and yes, my nephew was indeed trying to manipulate a new console, and despite the fact that he was probably onto something in terms of cost effectiveness, the big price tag is what put his dad off. That was obvious in what I said, so forgive my wry smile at your patronising pat on my head dear boy.

The point I made, and everyone else here, is that Joe public, the weekend supermarket warrior with family in tow, will see that they can pay £200+ for an Apple box, Xbox or PS3, or WHATEVER isn’t a Sky or Virgin box, to rent movie downloads. Or they can pay £7 for the DVD which is for keeps. Probably less than that. That immediate price difference is a massive psychological barrier that Steve Jobs just cannot comprehend. The up front costs to the average consumer of the Apple, Xbox, PS3 or BT HD movies services is high and unjustifiable for them. Regardless of the cost effectiveness that is clear to you and I, and most reading Reg no doubt.

If people already have HD source boxes installed then it's yet another option for them, but let us be honest with one another regardless of the tit for tat, they are Sky and Virgin boxes by and large and these will continue to corner the streaming movie rental market for many years. It doesn't matter that a Sky box costs £200, the same as an Apple box, 360 starter pack, or second hand PS3, to Joe they are luxuries. Sky or cable boxes are more tangible and acceptable because they get standard TV services as well.

Put that next to the ever falling costs of DVD's that can be held in the hand and cherished forever (why did you think I was inferring DVD players weren’t ubiquitous?!), and Steve is dreaming if he thinks online HD movie rental, from Apple at least, will be the holy grail over physical media. And that is totally down to the standard consumer, the love of the physical media and that three figured sum they will have to fork out right away if they want the “new Apple TV thing”. Or “BT thing”. Or “360 movie thing”. Or “PS3 TV box thing”.

Granted, the mention of BR disc was premature in my original point without a doubt as the players are still as pricey, but included to illustrate the point that even the price of discs are dropping at rate enough for people to want to buy more and think “I’m not spending over £200 just to rent the HD movie when I can own it for this much”.

That was the point! I could swear at you. But that’s just childish, so I will be far more mature and content myself with sticking my tongue out at the screen….

Richard Spooner

Oh for goodness sake...

Iain, why on earth would I be bashing the 360 just by failing to mention the cost of a Blu-Ray player? Read the bloody point I made! The point was about the up front costs REGARDLESS of platform you idiot. I mentioned standard DVD as well for crying out loud Iain! Learn to read. And for the record, my nephew tried to convince his Dad to buy him a 360 using the movie downloads argument.

Richard Spooner

Come on, Movie downloads are quite the giant killer

I think it’s a little early to claim download movie rentals will have a major impact on physical media purchases. It’s also quite dangerous to keep quoting “the movie buff” as the barometer for long term success for any format. After all HD-DVD was said to be the movie buff’s format!

It is long term, mass consumer purchases that make the success of anything, even more so with media and movie sales. Look at how the PS3 in the living room has driven BR disc sales. Consumers have a major psychological link to handing money over and having something in their hand in return. Rentals aside I give you that what with Virgin and Sky service, but rentals alone are not going to kill physical media sales.

Online movie rentals will give the consumer a much wider choice from where to make the popcorn purchase, but DVD, Blu-ray et al aren’t going to be killed off by them. After all, to the mass market consumer the first thing they will see is that they have to buy a dedicated set top box first and increase their broadband bandwidth each month. A ‘massive’ up front cost only to have their movie purchases vanish after a few days. That’s a BIG psychological barrier to overcome for most consumers, and Microsoft or Apple claiming the HD disc war was over before it started is bollocks. For this very reason.

It’s like saying Blockbusters was going to kill off media sales for the high street. Which didn’t happen.

Think about it this way, not as the IT geeks we all are reading this page who buy technology religiously, but as the every day consumer with a household to run and budget for….

Mom or Dad are shopping and little Johnny picks up a Xbox 360. “Can we buy this so I can rent a Disney film to watch the weekend?” The parent can see the BR disc for £15-£20, DVD for £9 or pay £200+ for something that will delete the movie in 48 hours….. What would you buy if you were a mass market consumer faced with the same situation?

Warner Bros gives all its hi-def loving to Blu-ray

Richard Spooner

Foolish to ignore PS3 Blu-ray

From the off, I'm no PS3 fanboy, but all along I've said it's stupid folly to ignore Blu-ray players in the shape of the PS3. A BR player is a BR player is a BR player regardless of what is is contained in. The HD-DVD consortium despite it's posturing on the subject, surely acknowledge this to one another, and to be publicly saying "they don't count" is...... b******s. Anonymous coward, my goodness, don't say such short sighted things on a generally well informed forum. No the PS3 isn't a dedicated top end BR player, but it is a BR player in homes and owners are buying BR movies in larger and larger quantities. Warner have seen this, and with the HD-DVD consortium thinking a bargain bin HD-DVD player sold on a tat home shopping channel is going to win the format war, and bring the big studios over, then they deserve the bloody nose. I've seen the QVC HD-DVD player running and it made me wince at the poor quality of the picture. Should we discount this as a HD-DVD player because it isn't technologically superior enough, like the PS3 it to 'proper' BR players? No, because it plays HD-DVD's.

Sony posts PS3 DivX firmware update

Richard Spooner

Aren't we a bunch of bitches....

No matter how hard someone tries to put positive slants on things, we all turn into such a bunch of bitches!! It's like we are in the playground!

Richard Spooner
Thumb Up

Long time coming

Right I'm going to keep my comment JUST to the issue around the DivX play back for the console.

How ironic that Sony have learnt more than Microsoft from those people that converted their old Xbox's to be a media centre. I so looked forward to the 360 finally replacing my old Xbox as a media centre, only to find the DivX player addition was, well... useless as Mark has pointed out.

Hats off to Sony for really grasping the nettle with this and going the whole hog, I can't find an Xvid or DivX file I have that it won't play.

Budget HD DVD player to include even more free discs

Richard Spooner
Dead Vulture

Cheap HD-DVD players set to flood the market soon.... well, when exactly?!

Has anyone noticed the arrival of these cheap players is starting to smack of the never never? The end of summer the HD-DVD consortium assured us sub £200 players will arrive en mass shortly. Then Autumn came and it changed to "flood the market in time for Christmas". Now Christmas has come (the key buying time is virtually over for stuff like this as well), and the first hint of the flood is January 2008, is one player and sold at one mail order shop. Wow, some flood. And as pointed out too, it's likely to be complete tat as well, which all but the most ill informed consumer will notice.

The HD-DVD consortium continually questions the validity of the PS3 as a Blu-ray player base, but I thought it was just rhetoric. After all, a Blu-ray player, is a Blu-ray player no matter what it is shoved into and they must know that. I guess not if they expect to win consumers over with a "flood" that has taken six months to even materialise and amounts to one bargain bin player. I was really looking forward to the arrival of these players. Not now I'm not if this is what we can expect.