September 2 - LOS ANGELES - At the Entertainment Media Expo (EMX) in Los Angeles, the Blu-ray Disc initiative (www.blu-raydisc-official.org) announced that it has added VC-1 (WM9-HD) and H.264 codecs to the HD disc format. This is considered to be a victory lap for Microsoft as they are now solidly incorporated in both HD DVD specs.
Richard Doherty, managing director of Blu-ray for Panasonic, indicated that adding the new codecs will allow for up to eight hours of HD content on a single disc. "Flexibility and market drivers" were major reasons for this decision according to Andy Parsons, senior VP of advanced product development for Pioneer.
As far as security and DRM issues are concerned with multiple formats, Parsons indicates that there have been no definitive decisions at this time. It was stated by Parsons that one of the key reasons to expand the format specification was to create "a long-life format for consumers."