Toshiba has announced a new technology that could help extend the life of current DVD libraries by extending picture quality to a higher definition of up to 1080p.

The technology, called XDE (eXtended Detail Enhancement), does not give true HD, but Toshiba claims the improved picture quality comes close to it. Toshiba is offering XDE DVD players for $149.99 (£75) in the US which boost image quality to to 720p, 1080i or 1080p.

The improved picture quality may be enough to tempt people to watch their existing DVDs a while longer without buying more expensive new Blu-ray Discs. Blu-ray discs hold far more data than a regular DVD, but movies offered on the discs are considerably more expensive than those supplied on standard DVDs.