Taiwanese electronics maker BenQ has announced that its BW1000 “Trio” Blu-ray burner for PCs will be available in August 2006-at least in Europe-at an aggressive price of €799. The launch would put BenQ on the market with a Blu-ray DVD burner at the same time as (or even ahead of) “Blu-ray group” mainstays Philips, Pioneer, and Sony, whose burners aren’t expected to be available until the latter half of the year at significantly higher prices.
According to BenQ, the BW100 will be able to read from and write to both 25 and 50 GB Blu-ray media as 2x speeds, as well as old-school dual-layer DVD+/-R (at 12x) and CDs (as 24x to 32x).
No word yet on whether availability in the United States will coincide with the European debut. As recently as last month, BenQ had indicated it planned to ship the BW1000 units by the end of 2006.