Still fresh off the defeat of its HD-DVD format by the Blu-Ray alliance, Toshiba [OTC:TOSBF] isn't just limping around with a case of the hi-def blues. In fact, the company is releasing this month a new standard DVD player that has what the company calls eXtended Detail Enhancement technology, which purports to play standard DVDs and upgrade their quality to almost-HD levels.
Toshiba's higher-ups cite the ubiquity of DVDs as one reason they've decided to re-focus their energy there. "Consumers have embraced the DVD format like no other technology and invested in large libraries of their favorite movies. As the market moves towards high definition, XDE lets them experience their existing DVD library and the tens of thousands of DVD titles in a whole new way," said Louis Masses, director of product planning at Toshiba, said in a statement.
The company's XD-E500 DVD player will be the first device to feature the new XDE technology. It will also make use of the standard array of quality-enhancing technologies like HDMI-CEC, JPEG capability, DivX, and music playback. The player will also feature a slim, glossy-black enclosure, much like most of today's HDTVs.
Of course, that's all well and good, but what's really behind Toshiba's new technology? Some bloggers have noted that the company refuses to add Blu-Ray players to its computers and home theater devices out of spite, and that this technology is a way to keep HD-loving customers happy without embracing an enemy standard. Of course, eventually the company will have to face the music — but for now, they'll get by putting XDE in their DVD players and Qosimo laptops.
The XD-E500 will sell for $150 when it ships this month.