We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,258 News Articles

Xbox 360 HD DVD drive killed off by Microsoft

No comment on possible switch to Blu-ray

Microsoft is to stop making external HD DVD drives for its Xbox 360 game console, but won't say whether it will switch to Blu-ray Disc drive instead. The company will continue to provide warranty and product support for existing HD DVD players, it said.

The Xbox 360 has a standard DVD drive built in: support for high-definition content came only with an add-on. Sony's PlayStation 3 (PS3) console, however, has a Blu-ray Disc drive built in, which helped grow support for the rival high-definition format.

Microsoft's announcement comes barely a week after HD DVD's main backer, Toshiba, said it will stop making the drives in the face of declining support for its high-definition format from retailers and studios. HD DVD's other supporters included Microsoft, Intel, HP and Universal Studios. Blu-ray also had the support of Panasonic and Samsung.

See also:

Toshiba finally signals end of HD DVD

Timeline: HD DVD versus Blu-ray

Web downloads to make Blu-ray irrelevant?

Warner Bros, which initially supported HD DVD, said early this year it would switch to Blu-ray Disc, a decision widely seen as a mortal blow to the format. Retailer Wal-Mart also recently said it would no longer sell HD DVDs.

A Microsoft spokesperson said that the company is taking the long-term view that support for specific high-definition drives is less important as people increasingly look to download movies and content from the Internet.

Microsoft's Xbox Live Marketplace lets people download content to their Xbox or PC from major studios such as Paramount Studios and Warner Bros, with recent titles such as 'Ocean's Thirteen'.

That movie, which costs £19.99 to download from the site, lets a user keep one copy on their PC and one copy on their mobile device. The movie is encoded in Microsoft's Windows Media Player format.

Related article:

Xbox 360 Elite review


IDG UK Sites

Best Black Friday 2014 tech deals: Get bargains on smartphones, tablets, laptops and more

IDG UK Sites

What the Internet of Things will look like in 2015: homes will get smarter, people might get fitter

IDG UK Sites

Artist creates a geometric rave in a chapel for The House of St Barnabus

IDG UK Sites

Mac mini (Late 2014) 1.4 GHz review: Mac mini is sort of upgradable, but is it any good as it is?