Poised to jump on Blu-Ray bandwagonFollowing the news earlier this week that Warner Bros. has made the decision to drop their support for the HD-DVD format , Microsoft has also been mulling over the future of the optical disc format.
In an interview with Reuters, Albert Penello, the group marketing manager for Xbox Hardware, said that the company would consider a Blu-Ray add-on for Xbox 360 in the future if HD-DVD fails.
"It should be consumer choice, and if that's the way they vote, that's something we'll have to consider," said Penello. "I fundamentally don't think this has a significant impact on Xbox 360 versus PS3," he told Reuters.
Penello's comments are in contrast to the statement made at the beginning of the CES show,where Peter Moore said that they had "absolutely no plans to support other optical formats". "As we've said before, we're confident that HD-DVD will bring the excitement of high-definition movies to the consumer faster and at a greater value," he continued. "We believe that consumers have signalled what format they want to enjoy high-definition DVD and we're going to follow them down that path."
Of course, it makes sense for Microsoft to adopt the Blu-Ray format if HD-DVD fails, and if it does it would have been a wise-move by the company not to combine a costly internal HD-DVD drive with the Xbox 360 when they launched the console. It was widely rumoured that Bill Gates would announce the Xbox Ultimate at CES this year, which was said to be a new SKU sporting a built-in HD DVD drive, but that didn't materialise.
If a report in today's Financial Times is correct, HD-DVD could be about to receive another big blow if Paramount also switch sides to Blu-Ray.
With numerous HD digitial download services, including movie rental services and the likes of the Xbox live marketplace already allowing the download of HD movies over the net, it begs the question, will either format be as successful as their backers hope?
Source :: The Register