Dell is now offering the Blu-ray drive as an optional extra on its XPSTM M1710 notebook, aimed at high-performance gaming and technology applications. The option is available to customers worldwide, though it hasn't yet been extended to any other notebooks in Dell's range.
“Blu-ray optical drive technology has gained broad industry support and we believe it will become the optical drive standard of the future,” Alex Gruzen, senior vice president of the Dell Product Group, said in a statement announcing the new option.
As a founding member of the Blu-ray Disc Association, Dell has long positioned itself in the Blu-ray camp, arguing that the technology is better than rival HD DVD because of better data storage options and superior copy protection technology.
"Dell believes that Blu-ray Disc technology is superior because it meets all the requirements for next-generation removable storage," Dell's official Web site on the topic notes. "It has higher storage capacity, a richer feature set, can be used for data storage and high-definition content delivery, and allows for backward compatibility with CDs and DVDs."
Not everyone is so enthused about Blu-ray. A recent analysis of social media comments about hi-def DVD formats by Cymfony found that consumers were more positively disposed to HD DVD than Blu-ray. However, that perception was heavily influenced by Sony's inclusion of Blu-ray in the PS3, and the resultant delays in delivery and limited supply of the next-generation console.