TOKYO – Toshiba Corp. said Friday it has postponed the release of high-definition DVD players in the United States until April, a month later than planned, so that it can synchronize the sales with title releases from Hollywood studies.
A precise sales date was not available, said Toshiba spokeswoman Junko Furuta.
But the Japanese electronics company was "currently working with major studios and major retailers to finalize sales dates of our players," she said.
Toshiba had previously said it would release the new product in March.
The HD DVD format and the competing Blu-ray disc format, backed by Sony Corp (SNE)., deliver dazzling images in high-definition video and can store much more data than today's DVDs, allowing for more interactive features, such as enjoying a movie while simultaneously watching the director discuss the scene.
Sony has said it will start selling Blu-ray disc DVD players in the United States this summer.
The HD DVD format is backed by Universal Studios, Warner Bros. and Intel Corp. (INTC), as well as Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), which hopes its new Xbox 360 video game console will challenge Sony's PlayStation.
The HD DVD format, jointly developed with Japan's NEC Corp. (NIPNY), is incompatible with Blu-ray, which is also backed by Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd. (MC), which makes Panasonic brand products, Apple Computer Inc. (AAPL), Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) and Dell Inc. (DELL), along with a variety of other tech companies and studios.
Sony has already started selling video recorders that use the Blu-ray technology and is planning to release the PlayStation 3 game consoles, which also use the technology, by November. Sony has not disclosed a price for the Blu-ray disc players.
Furuta said Toshiba has begun making pre-sale HD DVD demonstration in 40 major U.S. cities since last month, including New York, Los Angeles and Seattle.