Following up on their useful examination of HD-DVD, TeamXbox has published an easy-to-understand run-down of the facts concerning Sony's Blu-Ray (aka Beta-Ray) format. They're even kind enough to summarize their own article:
Blu-ray Disc has a higher storage capacity per layer than HD DVD.
Blu-ray Disc has a higher transfer rate and recording speed that HD DVD as the result of using a higher value of NA.
At 10,000 rpm rotation speed results in a 12X Blu-ray Disc drive while that is equal to 9X HD DVD.
Therefore, HD DVD is required to rotate at higher speeds to reach the same transfer rates of Blu-ray Disc.
Blu-ray Disc media has a different internal structure than HD DVD and DVD. Thickness is the same for the discs, but different for the layers inside.
As a result, hybrid discs are easier to develop on Blu-ray Disc because of the format’s 0.1mm thickness for the data layer. A single side Blu-ray Disc could incorporate a dual layer DVD-9 (8.5GB) disc, but in the case of HD DVD, that requires a double side disc.
HD DVD media is less expensive to manufacture than Blu-ray Disc because it doesn’t require significant changes to existing production lines.
However many gigs your rearview mirror ornament of choice ends up packing, I tend to agree with Mr. Gate's that this latest format war is a loser's game. The future has to lie somewhere beyond getting off the couch to change discs. It's too much like switching channels without a remote.
[previously: HD-DVD vs. Beta-Ray]