Microsoft’s chair throwing overlord Steve Ballmer has stated in an interview that the company plans a Blu-ray drive as an accessory.
When asked whether the Xbox would be getting Blu-ray, he stated it would be available as an extra:
“Well, I don’t know if we need to put Blu-ray in there — you’ll be able to get Blu-ray drives as accessories.”
This presumably refers to an external optical drive unit connected to the console, an arrangement a number of previous consoles have experimented with, generally with limited success.
Lesser Microsoft flacks refused to confirm the statement, but would not deny it either:
“Our immediate solution for Blu-ray-quality video on an Xbox 360 is coming this fall with Zune Video and 1080p instant-on HD streaming. As far as our future plans are concerned, we’re not ready to comment.”
Microsoft specifically denies the BD drive as a misunderstanding:
“Steve was referring to Blu-ray accessories for the PC.
As we have said in the past, we have no plans to introduce a Blu-ray drive for the Xbox 360. In fact, the future of home entertainment starts this fall when Xbox 360 becomes the first and only console to offer instant-on 1080p streaming HD movies.
With a library of thousands of TV shows and movies to choose from, Xbox 360 owners can instantly watch the movies they want, when they want, in the highest form of high definition.”
Reassuring news indeed for all those American households with 100mbps Internet connections…