Sony and Panasonic have announced plans to increase the capacity of Blu-Ray discs (such as those used by PS3 games) from 25GB to 33.4GB. Hideo Kojima will be so pleased!

According to a report from Nikkei, the increase comes courtesy of some new ways to evaluate content on the disc. Or, in more technical terms, is thanks to new partial response maximum likelihood (PRML) signal processing, which "assumes inter-symbol interference, which makes it difficult to base optical disc quality evaluation on jitter, as is widely done now for Blu-ray and many other optical discs".

Now, there's good news, and there's good news. Good news first: this advance will be compatible with all existing Blu-Ray players, as all that's required is a firmware update. So the technology will find its way to PS3 games soon enough.

And the good news? The increase applies to all layers of the disc. So as soon as dual-layered Blu-Ray discs start becoming common, you'll be able to fit 66.8GB of data on a disc.

From 25 to 33.4 GB per Layer, Even Larger Blu-ray Discs on the Horizon [Nikkei]