Universal next to abandon HD-DVD?

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Following Warner's

high-profile defection

to Blu-Ray, and the news that Paramount has an

escape clause

in its HD-DVD contract,

Variety

reports that studio powerhouse Universal could be the next firm to pitch its flag in the Blu-Ray camp.

The site claims that Universal's HD-DVD commitment has officially been brought to an end, paving the way for the studio to release Blu-Ray versions of its films. It has also been confirmed that Warner sister-companies New Line and HBO have also made the move to Blu-Ray.

However, for the time being both Universal and Paramount, which are the only remaining major studios currently committed to HD-DVD, have pledged to continue releasing HD-DVD versions of their movies.

Format holder Toshiba is also remaining resilient about its struggling format, saying that it has no intentions to withdraw from the hi-def content race.

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