Microsoft May Consider Xbox 360 Blu-ray Add-on

By Chris Faylor, Jan 09, 2008 9:03am PST An Xbox 360 add-on that would enable the console to play Blu-ray format movies is possible, Microsoft has reaffirmed.

"It should be consumer choice; and if [Blu-ray is] the way they vote, that's something we'll have to consider," Xbox group marketing manager Albert Penello told Reuters of the ongoing format war between HD DVD and Blu-ray.

Microsoft previously released an external Xbox 360 accessory that allowed the system to play HD DVD discs. In the past, former corporate VP Peter Moore noted that consumer demand could bring a Blu-ray add-on to the Xbox 360.

The optional HD DVD drive makes the Xbox 360 the only console that can play HD DVD movies, while the PlayStation 3 is the only console that can play Blu-ray movies due to its internal Blu-ray drive. Though PS3 games are pressed on Blu-ray discs as well, the 360 only uses the HD DVD format for movies, with games arriving on regular old DVDs.

News of Warner Bros. abandoning the HD DVD has many signaling the end of the HD format war, with Paramount, one of the last major HD DVD backers, rumored to be leaving the format as well. "You can't say it's not a bummer, not a setback, but I've seen this battle declared over so many times," said Penello.

Acclaimed director Michael Bay, meanwhile, remains firm in his belief that Microsoft is intentionally sabotaging both Blu-ray and HD DVD.

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