CES '08: 360 could do an 180 on Blu-ray

[UPDATE] Microsoft exec tells Reuters that if customers choose Sony's high-def disc format, the Xbox manufacturer might make an add-on for it.

At the Consumer Electronics Show two years ago, shortly after Microsoft announced the HD DVD add-on for the Xbox 360, the company's then-Xbox marketing executive Peter Moore admitted that a future add-on that would play Blu-ray discs was not out of the question, if the need for one arose.

With Warner Bros. last week committing to produce Blu-ray movies exclusively, many industry watchers predicted that Sony's high-definition disc format--a prominent feature of the PlayStation 3--had scored a knockout punch on Toshiba's HD DVD. At this year's CES, Microsoft's Xbox group marketing manager Albert Penello told Reuters today that the Warner move wasn't the end of the format wars, but acknowledged that his company is still keeping its options open.

"It should be consumer choice; and if that's the way they vote, that's something we'll have to consider," Penello told the news service.

While Penello downplayed the potential impact of the Warner deal on Xbox 360 sales, he acknowledged that it wasn't something the HD DVD-backing Microsoft had wanted to see.

"You can't say it's not a bummer, not a setback, but I've seen this battle declared over so many times," Penello said, adding, "I want consumers to have a voice in this and I think there are a lot of consumers who bought HD DVD who are going to have a say in how this shakes out."

[UPDATE] While Microsoft may be keeping its options open, it is far from abandoning HD DVD outright. Speaking with GameSpot, the console maker reaffirmed that the HD DVD format is still its high-definition playback standard of choice, for the time being. "Microsoft currently has no plans at this time to consider Blu-ray as an option. We continue to believe that HD DVD is the best optical solution for consumers, since it's the only format today that delivers quality experiences at affordable prices."

Written By

Discussion

918 comments
division_9
division_9

HD DVD is like titanic on dry land.

Kenaue
Kenaue

Believe what you want MS, but HD-DVD has failed. Blu-Ray looks amazing, and most HD-DVD's I have see were sub-par at best.

NobodysFool990
NobodysFool990

CaptainHerlock: You need to just stop right there. Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed on DVD9 isn't even harming the framerate. It was however reported that Blu-Ray's version isn't better went is why they i'm assuming released a patch to fix things. Now back to the topic, I would like to stay an equal in this debate. Until we start seeing PC Games using the Blu-Ray disc then you can say we need it. HD-DVD isn't out just yet and no one has a sure answer it's dead. No one has crystal ball, we don't know how it will turn out, companies could do a 180 on Sony or even the HD-DVD camp.

Lex_Luthor_XLII
Lex_Luthor_XLII

tritosk8: your math sucks and your facts are fuzzy. "sony said its all about the games and what the ppl want" we're all still waiting for the games, and they're only slowly catching up to what the people want

tritosk8
tritosk8

so there saying xbox is making u spend 400 more bucks just to barely pull of what the ps3 can already do? and u have 2 ugly ass things u have to add on ur xbox to watch movies and u have to pay 100 bucks for wireless? o my bad u will need around 500 bucks on acesorries to get close to ps3? and pay for live...no no no...looks like 360 is going down hill...i mean i read the ps3 hasnt even came close to using 30% of its power? well thats what i read from dev. i just see ps3 coming way out ahead in this console war. which is cool cause i have a ps3 and xbox. i do have to say i do like the 360 controller more...but thats it and wtf is up with the power adapter for 360? that gets and the way and its to loud....god microsoft sucks lol sony been in the game alot longer and it shows. plus the lead of sony said its all about the games and what the ppl want so how are they not listening to the fans? i have everything i want=] im happy with my ps3

moose517
moose517

man, i hope that make an option for those of use who bought the HD-DVD drive to trade in for the Blu-ray drive

JFreezy02
JFreezy02

I'm sticking to good old DVD until the dust settles. It helps that I don't have a HD TV right now lol! HD TV prices will drop soon when the new OLED TVs come out.

swoosh18
swoosh18

sooo..xbox is copying the playstaion? lol ok

tomjontee
tomjontee

Fact is Microsoft attempted to under cut Bluray with a slightly cheaper product offering a very similar experience. Problem of course is that they misread the market, simple as. I (and I am sure many others) do have some money in my pocket and am perfectly willing to spend a little more to buy the initial PS3 and then the Bluray discs. I also have a 360 but I'm going to sell it soon, first off it has broken once, second the cost is just mounting and mounting, how long did the Elite take to come out? Where was the premium HDMI, wireless, HDDVD drived model for the first couple of years?? As consumers we had no choice, just expensive add-ons and upgrades and I for one am sick of it! Plus has anyone considered how much money Microsoft must be making from the Live subscriptions. Ok the experience is better than PSN but not nearly enough to justify that crazy amount of money they are raking in. Anyway my point is simply that many people who buy a console are also serious not just about gaming, but entertainment. And you can't beat a PS3 for music, high definition films and internet browsing (all for ONE price).

jogunther
jogunther

I think the comment written that Blue Ray was piggy backed in as conspiracy for the PS3, by unamed person. It was part of there strategy from the beginning. It will benefit the gaming part of things in the future. "Rant"

pockets187
pockets187

I hope that Microsoft doesnt go Bluray. I really do not like Sony they always have a way to look out for themselves only and dont care about the consumers. They have found another way to stick it to the consumer. First with Bluray there are different versions aka profiles. So right now all the bluray players are only able to play the movie and basic special features, where all HD-DVD players take advantage of all the special features. Also check out a story that I had read about Bluray before from Businessweek. http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/may2006/tc20060526_680075.htm?campaign_id=rss_tech

philip-joe
philip-joe

Microsoft is kind of out of their mind I guess... And Beaglesniffer, DVD 9 is bad disc to use for videogames, HD DVD and Blu-ray are much better.

Beaglesniffer
Beaglesniffer

@OHalloran DVD has moved on a bit they have more than 4.7gb lol DVD 9 which is used for the 360 can hold 7.95gb plus compressing etc has also improved since the days of san andreas i assume for this gen i dont think blu ray is needed yeah it will be easy for devs they wont have to worry about space but if they can fit GTA, mass effect, assasins creed and ovlivion on DVD 9 then i can safely say its fine for this gen no one for a couple of years will make RPG's much bigger every other game type isnt really a worry as for next gen blu ray is a must for both consoles as i guess higher resolutions come into play and the fact that games will start to become even bigger and also the graphics would have been improved loads :P atm tho to make a game big enough to even fit 12gb takes a long time let alone 50 lol

GOkinaka
GOkinaka

The consumers have a voice, but with the major studios opting for Blu-ray.....there really isn't going to be a choice in the near future.

OHalloran
OHalloran

360 getting a Blu-Ray drive can be a good thing for game devs that 50gig disc is going to be needed in a year or two. I dont know how R* are going to fit GTAIV on a DVD when San Andreas was hard a nuff i heard and with no inbilt hard drive to for def on a 360 we can only see what they can do with the 4.7gig DVD.

KBABZ
KBABZ

Is there anyone aside from me who thinks the Sony will restrict Microsoft from making Blu-Ray add-ons should it happen? It'd be a great laugh: "Here Microsoft, we've been behind you for so long, we wanted to give you this for a gift!" *whack!*

Sycosi
Sycosi

I have a 360 and flatly refused to buy the horrible looking stand-alone HD-DVD player when my Ps3 has a HD movie playback facility built in?! M$ are just to damn greedy. £280 for the prem console, £50 online fee, £60 Wireless adapter and then an additonal £130 for the HD player?! making a grand total of £520! when my Ps3 has all those facilities for £300?? Yeah right!

vahid_xbox_360
vahid_xbox_360

Xbox 360 does not need any Blue ray driver . never - ever .

vahid_xbox_360
vahid_xbox_360

Xbox 360 does not need any Blue ray driver . never - ever .

akoolbrother420
akoolbrother420

Cool I'll just get a stand alone player I refuse to buy a PS3 because I'm only interested in 3 games on the system and I want a stand alone player because I have a serious setup and I want a good player not a game machine that I'll only use for movies

Lex_Luthor_XLII
Lex_Luthor_XLII

This is awesome news...it means me and my 360 will be set no matter which way the format war goes. (On a side note, if you can't afford $4.17 a month for a great online experience, you probably shouldn't have wasted your food stamps on a console in the first place.)

sean87
sean87

I knew that bluerey would win the format war because it can store more data on one disc. And bluerey also sounds like a cooler name not that that means anything.

LostSoul1974
LostSoul1974

I have the HD-DVD add-on & would love to see the format flourish. However, if it doesn't I won't get bent out of shape about, I'd just adapt to the changes to my environment. If there were a BD-DVD add-on for the X360, would I consider it? Yes, if it's purchase would be as cost-effective as buying the HD-DVD add-on was. If it were closer to a stand alone unit's price, I'd probably go with a stand alone unit then. I probably would not buy a PS3 though...it's not because I'm not impressed with the machine. It's because I already have a gaming rig that I'm very much pleased with & I try to go with one at a time. More so than that, I have a life outside of gaming, so I don't know if I'd have the time to invest into a 2nd machine to get a return on the amount spent on it. I'd want to use it as much as I use the X360, which is considerable.......

DiscGuru101
DiscGuru101

"We continue to believe that HD DVD is the best optical solution for consumers, since it's the only format today that delivers quality experiences at affordable prices." -I agree. HD-DVD looks better. But so did Beta heh...

minox2109
minox2109

This change has no real threat on the gaming industry.. whoever it might shift a few more buyer to the ps3 which is a good thing from sony's point of view... and as for the technology no matter wht hd downloads will not suddenly take over... it might take another 50 years before tht happens jst like burning things on dvds hasnt taken over reg CDs.. it takes time... but this format war could be something that could end soon and their will always be buyers of disks.... i mean y buy a movie or CD when u can download them online... people still do it... its a material thing it always feel more real to the consumer tht way... for now atleast..

KanefromCanada
KanefromCanada

Rabbitcancer says "Believe me - Sony would be very wise to release a killer hard drive if it REALLY wants to compete." Sony doesn't need to release a bigger hard drive... You can upgrade your PS3 with ANY laptop harddrive. You can run windows, linux or any OS you want. So there is no need to come out with an "elite" unit.

minox2109
minox2109

This whole value thing over n over again.... its fact tht the 360 is a money trap... my friend who owns a 360 agrees in the long run they cost is about the same if not more... anyway... the reason y the 2 consoles can compare is because 360 is more focused on gaming however the ps3 is more about creating an overall entertainment system.... anyway 1 of the main reasons the bluray drive is built in is because the ps3 games r on bluray... its not like u can hve a choice u cant play games without it... n 1 of the main key points is the fact that the blu ray offers more space which is eventually really gonna matter...

joeyfine
joeyfine

rabbitcancer Sony doesn't need to release bigger Hard drive. you can go to your local store and buy a new one and install it yourself. my ps3 has a 160GB HDD from Newegg.com and all it cost me was $84 bucks. anytime i need more space i'll install a bigger harddrive when i need it.

Natdaddy
Natdaddy

Sony wins as usual? Right...this is like the first win in 25 or so years?

thekodaman
thekodaman

Not going to happen simply because Sony is a major investor in Blu-Ray and most likely block any move to make a Blu-Ray player for 360.

enoslives7
enoslives7

Looks like Sony wins as usual . micro$oft should stick to software.

ravensong
ravensong

rabitcancer very intelligent post, not saying anything against that post....but you do know that Sony doesn't need to offer a bigger hard drive, right? Why? because you can purchase ANY laptop hard drive from ANY store that sells them and "upgrade" your PS3. You did know that, right?

ScottEFresh
ScottEFresh

The PS3 has always had the superior hardware...I don't think many people have argued that (except for complete morons and xbots). All they were missing was software and now that they have games and are winning the format war...it's over for the 360.

jsduncan7
jsduncan7

Xbox 360 = $350 HD-DVD Drive = $180 to game on-line = $50/year wireless = $100 Total = $680(+$50/year thereafter) PS3= $400 you get all the above(+ bigger hard drive), and it doesn't play the soon to be dead HD-DVD format! You tell me, Microsoft, which is a better value and more affordable if I wanted to HD game and watch HD movies?

Xomonuchi
Xomonuchi

HD-DVD is DEAD !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! the futur is Blu

dr_jashugan
dr_jashugan

Thrall-3-20, Warner Bros. already went exclusive for Blu-Ray. Paramount and Universal eventually will follow. HD-DVD's days are numbered. This Format War is in it's final stage with BD in the lead. 8)

Thrall-3-20
Thrall-3-20

I hope HD-DVD wins... I just got my HD-DVD player add on for the 360 for xmas. ^.^

sunnystarz
sunnystarz

what about an add-on for HD DVD for PS3.... jk

rabbitcancer
rabbitcancer

As an Xbox 360 owner - this is good news. I'm GLAD I HAD THE OPTION to hold off buying a HD player until the format war was settled and there was never any doubt in my mind that Microsoft would license BD if BD won. PS3 fans should thank their lucky stars that 50% of their console's unit cost will not become obsolete in the next year - I'm happy for them because I would be pissed. However, I have an Xbox so I win either way - having said that, I'd still likely buy a standalone player. Anyone who's serious about Home Cinema would say the same. What sealed the deal for me on the Xbox Elite was the 120GB hard drive for downloadable HD content and games. Believe me - Sony would be very wise to release a killer hard drive if it REALLY wants to compete. BD is just smoke and mirrors when it comes to GAMING.

funky_facon
funky_facon

if microsoft provides blu-ray for the xbox the hd-dvd will die because the movie production companies still backing the hd-dvd will leave the hd-dvd. because if the xbox can play blu-ray they would not need to make movies in hd-dvd format. this wouldnt affect the console wars much because it's pretty much over and 360s dont even use hd-dvd for their games, but the format wars can end if MS makes this decision.

bennae66
bennae66

i bought a wii cause i play games. i bought a 360 cause i play games, we just happen to use it for dvds as well. one day i will feel a need for bluray or hddvd but im happy to see how it pans out for now. i will buy a ps3 for bluray if it wins, i will buy a hddvd addon for my 360 if that wins. its no big deal. what you dont want to do is sell a system based on its media cause thats got nothing to do with the games. and the games are where the money is at.

vf21x
vf21x

PS3's!!!!........PS3's!!!.....come get your fresh HOT and HD viable PS3's right here!!!!!!..........Blu-Ray included. HEHEHE!!! SERIOUSLY PEPOLE......... Microsoft never really supported HD-DVD because it was never an internal 360 component. They say choices were given to customers and I say BS. They took a cautious approach because they knew that HD-DVD could fail and they could not afford to get burnt. Who put's a freaking DVD player on a next gen HD system??????? The day the 360 Ultimate comes out with a built-in Blu-Ray player, I will LMAO!!!!!!!!

Dreski83
Dreski83

seriously.. does this matter to me? Not at all :roll: But as the dude in the suit said so nicely, its about pleasing the consumer. Having a fair selection of games for my 360 is what a I expect, having a PS3 declare itself sitting pretty due to movie sells gives off mixed reactions... When this starts affecting game production then I'll cry foul, in the mean time keep focus on where it matters most, the videogames!

Dr_Yassam
Dr_Yassam

ecofriend wrote: "MS is not doing a 180. They have always said, they want to give consumers the choice and if they choose Blu-ray that the 360 will be capable of playing Blu-ray media." 100% correct. Many people have very short memories. :)

Sammojo
Sammojo

SnuffDaddyNZ - You are saying that what is good about HD-DVD is that it can be a DVD? The whole point of these formats is to go beyond DVD. Why BUY a HD-DVD if you dont have a Player. Most people will just get the much cheaper DVD. Blu-ray and HD-DVD are only benefitial when on their respective players, so having DVD version on the disc just means you can run the movie in lower def if you dont have the player. That does not make it superior in anyway, it was quite stupid to be frank.

SnuffDaddyNZ
SnuffDaddyNZ

HD-DVD is superior for consumers since it allows the option for the distributor to include a DVD version of a movie on one side of the disc, and the HD-DVD version on the other. And if one wants to convert their movies to play on portable devices, you stand a much better chance of doing that with a DVD version of a movie rather than a Blu-Ray or HD-DVD version which no doubt have far superior encryption mechanisms. The additional 20gig of storage on Blu-Ray does not benefit consumers, except if the time comes when writeable Blu-Ray discs and drives are as affordable as writeable DVD's are today.

gin_rummy89
gin_rummy89

If Microsoft drops HD-DVD it will die, MS is kind of a life line for the format. I'll stick with standerd DVD's for the foreseeable future, but things are looking good for BR.