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News in Brief - august 2013


PARAMOUNT are creating the ultimate opportunity for one lucky Star Trek fan and space enthusiast: a one-off Blu-ray of Star Trek Into Darkness with Special Edition Packaging featuring an authentic 497-year-old meteorite. The space rock from the Nantan meteorite shower, which was witnessed falling in Guangxi-Zhuang province in China 1516 A.D., has been hand-carved into the shape of the internationally recognisable Star Fleet symbol and will feature prominently on the exclusive Blu-ray Special Packaging which includes the meteorite's certificate of authenticity. See image.

THE 3D Blu-ray home video market has seen strong growth through 2012 albeit from a low initial base. In the US, IHS Screen Digest analysis indicates that during 2012 consumers spent $218.9 million (up 50.2% over 2011) purchasing 7.57 million BD3Ds (up 56.5%), at an average consumer price of $28.90. Overall, total spending on Blu-ray Disc retail in the US was up 11.5% compared to 2011. In 2012, 196 titles were released on BD3D in the US, compared to 106 titles at the end of 2011. The number of BD3D releases likely to be available at retail by the end of 2013 is set to be at a minimum of 254 titles.

LEADING Blu-ray disc equipment maker Singulus Technologies has seen an uptake for its BLULINE II production machines. In the first six months of 2013, the company achieved slightly higher sales numbers than in the comparable period for 2012 - €49.2 million versus €43.6 million. This translated into smaller losses. In H1 2013 earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) stood at -€6.5 million, compared to -€12.4 million in H1 2012. Streamlining operations led to a contraction of the workforce from 444 to 362 staff in June 2013.

SIX MPEG-2 Patent Portfolio Licensees have filed patent enforcement actions against Craig Electronics, Curtis International and ViewSonic for infringing patents essential to the MPEG-2 digital video compression standard used in digital television and DVD. The three companies offer in the US patent-protected products, such as television sets, without a license. The suits seek monetary damages and injunctions.