Here’s James Surowiecki on Blu-Ray:
I think the Internet and the cable systems have a long way to go before streaming video or even high-definition movies on demand become a meaningful replacement for something like Blu-Ray. For the vast majority of Americans, it currently takes far too long to download a high-definition movie for it to be convenient, and while cable systems are doing a better job of offering high-definition films on demand, the supply is (at least in New York) minuscule, and the quality is nowhere near as high as Blu-Ray offers.
Blu-Ray’s real problem, it seems to me, is much simpler: it’s too expensive.
It seems to me though that what we have is a race — will digital downloads get better and more accessible before Blu-Ray gets cheap enough to be competitive? A friend of mine was asking me which Blu-Ray player he should buy, and I told him he should buy a DVD player for $40 and wait a year. Either Bl-Ray players and discs will be a lot cheaper, or it won’t matter because you’ll be able to download most of the things you want from Netflix and watch them on demand.