The head of Sony, Sir Howard Stringer, says he considers the 'format war' between Blu-ray and HD DVD has reached stalemate, adding that before becoming CEO of Sony he'd believed there was an opportunity for the two formats to have been united into a single system.

Now, Stringer says, the battle is mainly a matter of prestige between the two sides, but 'It really doesn't mean as much as all that.' However, he says the fight remains 'difficult', adding that 'We were trying to win on the merits [of Blu-ray], which we were doing for a while, until Paramount changed sides.'

In the interview, given to Associated Press, Stringer is bullish about what is probably the best-known Blu-ray player in the world, the PlayStation 3: he says the recent price-cut has seen it become the fastest-selling console in Europe. The company aims to sell 10m units by the end of its financial year in March 2008, bringing it closer to the 13.2m sales to date of Nintendo's Wii.

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