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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Microsoft says Xbox doesn’t need Blu Ray

Microsoft’s Head of Gaming and Entertainment in the UK, Stephen McGill, has spoken out on the issue of Blu-ray, which of course is an advantage the PS3 holds over the Xbox.

In an interview with Xbox 360 Achievements, he was asked whether sticking with a DVD drive and not adopting a Blu-ray drive would shorten the Xbox’s overall lifespan.

McGill played the issue down, saying that it might have been a subject of debate originally, but those days were long gone.

He said: “I think people now recognise what a smart decision it was to keep the pricing low, and actually Blu-ray is going to be passed by as a format. People have moved through from DVDs to digital downloads and digital streaming, so we offer full HD 1080p Blu-ray quality streaming instantly, no download, no delay. So, who needs Blu-ray?”

Is he right? Blu-ray sales might have been slower than anticipated at retail this summer, but that’s probably due to the recession; it’s hardly a dying format.

And the trouble with full HD streaming is how many people have connections, or indeed broadband data limits, that can deal with it?

Yes, in the future when next-gen broadband is more widespread, this is definitely where things are headed. But how long it will take to get there, that’s another question.

One thing is for sure, though. We’re unlikely to see a new Xbox super-slim which incorporates a Blu-ray drive – although perhaps the next-gen Xbox 720 will have to.

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