What is Blu-ray?

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Blu-ray, often misspelled as Blue-ray, is a commonly used term that emerged in 2006 as the newest technology in DVDs. While you may have heard of Blu-ray, you might not fully understand what it means or where the name came from.

Blu-ray Disc, developed and backed by the Blu-ray Disc Association, is similar to DVDs in size and function, but differs in terms of storage capacity and reading and writing methods. The Blu-ray Disc Association was established in 2004 as the governing body of Blu-ray Disc technology and included consumer electronics makers, computer hardware makers, and motion pictures makers.

The Blu-ray Disc Association helps to develop, license, establish standards and promote business opportunities for Blu-ray Discs as a group of the world's leading personal computer, consumer electronics, and media manufacturers.

Blu-ray Disc technology relies on a blue-violet laser optic technology to read and write on the disc, compared to the red laser optic technology used by DVD, DVD±R, DVD±RW, and DVD-RAM. The benefit of the blue-violet laser is that it has a much shorter wavelength than the previously used red laser which allows for a more intense focus with greater precision.

Because there is greater precision, more data can be packed into less space, allowing for more data to fit on the disc even though it is the exact same size as a normal CD/DVD. A usual single layer CD/DVD holds around 4.7 GB while a single layer Blu-ray Disc can hold around 25GB. Some technologies have even allowed Blu-ray Discs to store up to 500GB on a single disc.

The expanded storage capacities of Blu-ray Discs provide endless possibilities for the music, movie and multimedia industry when it comes to production and usage of Blu-ray Discs. Blu-ray Discs are considered by many as the future of DVDs. Consider a Blu-ray DVD player for your next DVD player and discover the difference that Blu-ray technology can make on the DVD experience.

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