Xbox 720 with Blu-Ray but no movie playback

By Alan Ng - Jan 16, 2013

We all know that next-generation consoles from Sony and Microsoft are almost on our doorstep, but what is a complete mystery at the moment is the next-generation features that each respective console will offer. We’ve heard a lot of speculation on how Microsoft will finally give in and add Blu-Ray support to their next Xbox, but some interesting rumors this week suggest that they may add a Blu-Ray drive solely for games, and block the playback of Blu-Ray movies.

Pulling such a stunt would be unthinkable for Blu-Ray movie fans, but Microsoft has shown with their current Xbox Live setup that business may come first for the company over consumer preference. Blu-Ray has its obvious storage advantages over DVD discs which are still used on the Xbox 360 and it’s logical to assume that the switch to Blu-Ray on the next Xbox will end storage problems that we see today on the Xbox 360.

With so much emphasis on streaming content over Xbox Live though, could we possibly see a next-generation Xbox console with just Blu-Ray discs for games only, and movie viewing restricted to premium streaming content only? An article over at TheNextXbox seems to think this could turn out to be a reality and would obviously send a message to Sony that their movie based discs are not welcome in Microsoft’s console.

It would be a bold move if Microsoft go ahead with this and it may just make consumers think twice if they want to settle for DVD movie playback only. They’ll ruffle a few feathers by blocking movie playback, but then they’ll gain a significant amount of new Xbox Live subscribers at the same time, which could be used for say, – the next under the table Call of Duty agreement in years to come.

It’s by no means a done deal yet of course, so don’t get too concerned about this just yet. If Microsoft did however make this change on their next Xbox console, how would you feel and would it ultimately affect your purchase?

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