If you want to watch high-definition versions of the latest James Bond film or Destiny's Child live onstage, you've got to get them on Blu-ray. And as the next-generation format war between Blu-ray and HD DVD continues to heat up, such exclusives are resonating with consumers: 70% of HD releases sold during first-quarter 2007 were Blu-ray, according to Nielsen VideoScan. This brings cumulative inception-to-date sales stats to 56.2% vs. 43.8%—also in Blu-ray's favor.

Blu-ray's success in the quarter was bolstered by a strong release slate, the impact of the Blu-ray-enabled PlayStation 3 hitting stores in December and the continued backing of five of the six major studios, compared with HD DVD's support from only three.

The best-selling HD title of the quarter also went to Blu-ray—the latest Bond flick, "Casino Royale." Music titles have so far been limited, but high-profile releases from Nine Inch Nails, Destiny's Child and Incubus—the last two available only on Blu-ray—came to market in the first quarter.

A clear winner in the format war is far from being crowned, however, and sales of such titles are, at best, generating momentum for a market that's in the earliest stages. Since HD DVD's introduction in April 2006 and Blu-ray's two months later, more than 400 releases have seen the light of day. While gaming and the adult film industry are playing roles in the industry's momentum, all eyes are on the one factor that will most-determine the market's future—the price of HD players.

Click here to read to the full story, including porn's influence in the ongoing format battle, what needs to happen this year for one side to pull ahead, who's undercutting the market as the war continues, and more.

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