NEWS - Thursday, April 3, 2008

360 will be bluray?

Since the fall of HD-DVD, a great deal of attention has been paid to rumors of the release of a Blu-ray solution for the Xbox 360 to replace the console’s HD-DVD add-on drive. Microsoft denied the rumors last month, but more recently, went to press with new inside word from industry sources suggesting that optical drive manufacturing heavyweight Lite-On has been invited to participate in the design of a built-in Blu-ray drive for the Xbox 360. The outlet goes on to speculate upon a potential price-war that could develop between a Blu-ray enabled Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3, should Microsoft continue to sell consoles below manufacturing cost.

Microsoft denies the DigiTimes story, however. Speaking with TechRadar representatives stated: "No. Lite-On is not manufacturing Blu-ray drives for Xbox 360. As we have stated, games are what are driving consumers to purchase game consoles and we remain focused on providing the largest library of blockbuster game available. For our customers who want a premium movie experience we offer the largest library of on-demand HD content available and the ability to play back DVDs in high definition."

A Microsoft denial makes sense regardless of the validity of DitiTimes’ sources, as the company would most certainly want to wait to announce a new Xbox 360 SKU until it is closer to release (according to rumors around Christmas 2008). We believe a Blu-ray 360 is indeed a possibility, but we don’t expect to hear anything but denials from Microsoft until much later in the year.


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