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Blu-Ray negotiations live on?

Make your minds up chaps.

Just days after SCE president Ken Kutaragi declared an end to negotiations with Toshiba over a unified disc format, reports say discussions could reopen within weeks.

According to Nikkei Net, Sony and Toshiba may come back to the table after shareholder meetings scheduled to take place later this month.

These will coincide with management reshuffles for both companies - Sony Computer Entertainment America CEO Howard Stringer is already set to take over as group CEO tomorrow, while Ryoji Chubachi will become group president. Toshiba vice president Atsutoshi Nishida will take on the role of CEO from June 24.

As reported previously, Kutaragi earlier declared it was "game over" for talks following Toshiba's refusal to accept Blu-Ray as the basis for a unified disc format. Toshiba prefers the HD-DVD format, which can store less data but is cheaper to produce.

As a result, it had seemed inevitable that both Blu-Ray and HD-DVD would hit the market later this year, but there's now renewed hope that the Japanese giants' new management teams could reach an agreement.

This is something Sony has long hoped for, fearful of losing out in another format war as with Betamax in the 1980s. However, the question remains as to whether the management changes will be enough to ensure both sides can strike a deal.

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