CompUSA exemplifies why I feel sorry for consumers

Recently, I wrote a post saying how sorry I felt for consumers who might be snapping up so-called good deals on HD DVD players. Since that time the high definition DVD format war has come to an end. Blu-Ray has won.

For at least 24 hours I felt better knowing that the news of Blu-Ray’s victory would disseminate quickly. Until I received this email from CompUSA:


To be fair, this graphic was followed by text admitting the defeat of HD DVD in the high definition DVD format war. But the disgraceful attempt to convince consumers that HD DVD players were still a good buy because they can still up-convert your existing DVDs and that they will never find a price this good again on HD DVD movies is simply dispicable. I wonder how many people receiving this email even made it past the graphic to read the text part of the email. Shame on you CompUSA.
See for yourselves if you agree with me. Here’s the actual text that accompanied the graphic in the email:

Toshiba lost the war. but their pain is your gain!

We have an incredible deal for you. Did you know this HD-DVD player is also an incredible up-convert DVD player? This will usually run you around $79.99, but we’re giving you an HD-DVD player for $89.99 with 7-FREE HD-DVD movies (2 in the box, and 5 by mail) a $140.00 value, FREE! This offer ends Feb 28th, so don’t delay!

How did we get such a low price?

Sony and Toshiba have been battling over two high-definition formats. Blu-Ray (from Sony) and HD-DVD (from Toshiba). This week Toshiba announced they will stop producing the HD-DVD format and will work on the next generation device. As soon as we heard, we fought hard to get a new low price for you. We succeeded: You get the HD-DVD player, 7 Free HD-DVD Movies (worth $140), and the up-convert capability for just $89.99.

Look, all of us have traditional standard format DVD movies. This HD-DVD player not only plays HD-DVD movies, but it also upconverts standard DVD movies to the HD signal. What does upconvert mean? It takes the standard definition signal and converts it into a high definition signal. While it’s no comparison for a true HD-DVD, the upconversion process dramatically increases the quality of your old standard definition movies.

NOTE: Upconverting DVD players sell for around $79. I’m offering you an HD-DVD player, with built-in upconversion, and 7 FREE* movies (worth $140) for just $89. Heck, it’s like paying nearly 50% for the movies and getting a free HD-DVD player.

Look, Toshiba has discontinued this item and will not make any more. Once we sellout of these, they’re gone. This is a once in a decade event that just occurred. If you’ve been shopping for and HD-DVD player or an upconverting DVD player, this is the deal to get. But only if you hurry.