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NEC announced plans to ship a pair of chips that will make it easy to read Blu-ray discs and HD DVDs on the same player. The processors will reportedly cost the same as single format chips do today, and NEC vows to ship 300,000 of these bi-lingual parts by next April. To whom it will ship these chips, the company didn't say.

As the competing BD companies hold their breath until they turn blue in this idiotic format war, perhaps astute consumers will stay away in droves. Meanwhile, the stubborn contestants will hear the sound of crickets and see a tumbleweed blowing by, whining, "Okay, okay NEC. Maybe we should have a look at those chips, mkay?" By then, it'll be too little, too late. Pathetic.

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NEC moves toward a Blu-Ray-HD-DVD combo [Akihabara News, via CrunchGear]